For BB-CBM-2005/III block in West Bengal

Our Bureau

With this, the production sharing contracts for all the 10 blocks offered under CBM-III have been signed.

New Delhi, Nov. 17

BP Exploration (Alpha) Ltd has signed the production sharing contract (PSC) for the 10th block awarded under the third round of coal bed methane policy (CBM-III) with the Government. BP inked the PSC for the block BB-CBM-2005/III located in the Birbhum district of West Bengal.

Production sharing

With this, the PSCs for all the 10 blocks offered under CBM-III have been signed, an official communiqué said.

The awarded block covers an area of 248 sq. km. with the prognosticated natural gas resources of 50 billion cubic metres (BCM). The contracts for other nine blocks were signed on November 7 with the other winning companies/consortia, including an Anil Ambani group company.

According to the Petroleum Ministry sources, awarding of a block to BP Exploration was delayed because negotiations were still under way with the awardee company.

The contract was signed by Mr D.N. Narasimha Raju, Joint Secretary in the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, and Mr Jonathan Evans, Exploration Director, South Asia Exploration, on behalf of BP Exploration (Alpha) Ltd.

Coal bed methane

CBM is an alternative source of hydrocarbons, which is extracted from the coal seams from the coal bearing areas.

With huge coal reserves in the country, the CBM extraction would supplement the conventional sources of natural gas to help in bridging the big gap between demand and supply of natural gas.

It will also make coal mining safer since the absence of methane would reduce chances of fire accidents in coal mines.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated November 18, 2006)
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