20 May 2020
On 20 May 2020 OIL announced that it has received environmental clearance from the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF) for its drilling project under Assam’s Dibru- Saikhowa National Park .It has laid to rest the concern regarding the affect drilling may have on the flora and fauna of the region.
What was the concern?
- Spread over 340 square kilometres, Dibru-Saikhowa is one of the five national parks in the north-east region’s most populous state- Assam.
- The park, was declared a biosphere reserve, in 1997 and is home to 36 mammal species including tiger, Gangetic dolphin, feral horses and 382 bird species.
- It is an ecologically sensitive park.
- It is the only region in India that supports the feral horses.
- Drilling is likely to affect the flora and fauna of the region adversely.
- Drilling will be inside the national park.
- Dibru-Saikhowa is an island bounded by the Brahmaputra,Lohit and the Bibru river.
Highlights of OIL :
- Operations will have no impact on the park’s area as they will be conducted 3.5 km beneath the surface.
- OIL will use the sophisticated ERD (extended reach drilling) technology that will enable the exploration of hydrocarbon deposits horizontally.
- Drilling will take place at an average of more than 1.5 km outside the demarcated area of the national park.
- By using this technology wells can be drilled up to a depth of approximately 4 kilometres from the existing well plinth without entering the protected area.
- OIL is already carrying out hydrocarbon exploration for the last 15years in Baghjan area.
About Feral Horses:
- A feral horse is a free-roaming horse of domesticated stock. As such, a feral horse is not a wild animal in the sense of an animal without domesticated ancestors. However, some populations of feral horses are managed as wildlife, and these horses often are popularly called “wild” horses.
- IUCN Status is critically endangered.
About Extended Reach Drilling:
- It is state of the art directional drilling technique for drilling beneath the surface of the earth.
- It aims to reach larger area and longer distances.
- It ensures maximum productivity and drainage capability.