ConocoPhillips’ bitumen resources in Canada are produced using SAGD technology.
SAGD involves injection of steam into the reservoir, effectively liquefying the heavy bitumen, which then is recovered and pumped to the surface for further processing.
Surmont is a SAGD bitumen recovery facility that is operated by ConocoPhillips under a 50/50 joint venture agreement with Total E&P Canada. That means we co-own the development, but the facility itself is staffed and run by ConocoPhillips Canada employees and contractors.
Commercial production from Surmont 1 began in 2007. In 2010, ConocoPhillips commenced construction of Surmont 2, and achieved first production in the third quarter of 2015. Net production at Surmont more than doubled in 2016. ConocoPhillips is focusing on structurally lowering costs and reducing greenhouse gas intensity while ramping up production. Current gross production capacity is 140 MBOED, and there is potential for debottlenecking projects to increase capacity. In addition, opportunity exists for future expansion. Over the life of this multidecade project, Surmont will provide many social and economic benefits to the area.
We also have four additional land holdings in the Athabasca region called Thornbury, Saleski, Crow Lake and McMillan Lake, which contain substantial bitumen resources.