CFA Commentary on (OTC.BB: AAPH), (NYSE:OXY), (NYSE:BRY), (NASDAQ:BEXP), (NASDAQ:BBEP)
Point Roberts WA- November 23, 2010 – www.Investorideas.com, an investor research portal
specialized in sector investing, issues energy commentary from Lisa Springer, CFA, equity research
analyst and financial writer, featuring American Petro-Hunter, Inc. (OTC.BB: AAPH). The report discusses
the oil and natural gas deposits in California and the related public company plays.
Energy stocks in this report: American Petro-Hunter, Inc. (OTC.BB: AAPH), Occidental Petroleum,
Brigham Exploration, BreitBurn Energy Partners
Central Valley Has Largest California Oil Find in 35 Years
Lisa Springer, CFA, Equity research analyst and financial writer
Best known for solar energy, California is also rich in oil and gas. This state is one of America’s top
producers of crude oil, accounting for more than 10% of domestic production. Sizable oil and natural gas
deposits are found across six geological basins in California, located primarily in the Central Valley and
along the Pacific coast.
California is home to 17 of the nation’s top 100 oil fields, including the Belridge South field, believed
to be the third largest in the contiguous US. Most of the state’s drilling operations are concentrated
in Kern County and the Los Angeles basin, although substantial activity also takes place in offshore
waters. Exploration of Kern County fields is ramping up following last year’s announcement by Occidental
Petroleum (NYSE:OXY) of a major discovery believed to be the largest oil and gas find in California in
more than 35 years. Occidental estimates reserves of between 150 million and 250 million barrels of oil
and gas. The Kern County discovery has received the most press, but experts estimate there are at least
six fields in the region that contain reserves exceeding 100 million barrels of oil.
Wildcatters have been successfully drilling in California's Central Valley since the 1860s. Like oil
reservoirs in Texas, Louisiana and Pennsylvania, early explorers got a hint of what lay beneath the
surface from the area’s many above-ground oil seeps, which Native Americans had known about for
thousands of years.
Today, California has nearly 52,000 oil wells together producing over 630 thousand barrels of oil per
day. There are also some 1,600 gas wells pumping more than 760 million cubic feet of natural gas daily.
Occidental is California’s largest gas producer and second largest oil producer, but there are many
large independents active in California’s oil fields, including Berry Petroleum (NYSE:BRY), Brigham
Exploration (NASDAQ:BEXP), BreitBurn Energy Partners (NASDAQ:BBEP) and privately held West
America Energy Corp.
Another independent producer exploring in California fields is American Petro-Hunter (OTC.BB: AAPH),
which owns a 25% working interest in a 1,000 acre drilling prospect west of Modesto in the Central Valley
near Sacramento. The Central Valley is known as “California’s Gas Country” and has accounted for over
400 billion cubic feet of gas production to-date. Natural gas wells in the area are known for their long
lives, relatively stable rates of production and predictable declines.
American Petro-Hunter’s Sacramento Gas Project is estimated to contain 42 billion cubic feet of potential
recoverable reserves. The gas is found at depths of 7,400 feet in a 50 foot sand pay zone. Third party
engineers think a commercial well on the site could easily achieve initial production of 5,000 Mcf of gas
Output from nearby analog gas fields supports the expectation of high production rates. These fields
currently produce between 2,000 and 4,000 Mcf of gas per day. The close proximity of American Petro-
Hunter’s prospect to the Union Island, McMullin Ranch and Vernalis fields also suggest the presence of
sizable gas reserves. These fields are estimated to contain in aggregate over 437 billion cubic feet of
American Petro-Hunter (OTC.BB: AAPH) and its partner completed seismic testing at the Sacramento
Gas Project last year and are combining this data with seismic reports purchased from other engineering
firms. The seismic data will be used to identify promising drill targets. American Petro-Hunter expects
to complete drill site selection early next year. Once the drill site is chosen, preparations for drilling will
begin almost immediately. The company plans to drill a test well to 7,800 feet, which will hopefully confirm
the presence of trapped gas already indicated by the 2D seismic data. Drilling of the test well will likely
begin in the summer of 2011. American Petro-Hunter must wait until the dry summer months to drill
because the site is close to sea level. A total of three wells are planned as part of the drilling program.
Assuming gas is found in commercial quantities, American Petro-Hunter plans to sell its production
to groups such as PG&E Citygate, which supplies natural gas for electric power generation in the
Sacramento region. The company will benefit from California gas prices, which are among the highest in
the country. Current gas prices for PGE-Citygate are around $4.50 per Mcf.
American Petro-Hunter (OTC.BB: AAPH) is strongly committed to growth through the drill bit and the
development of America’s vast untapped oil and gas reserves. The Company’s aim is to become a mid-
tier producer within the next three years, which it plans to accomplish by aggressively developing its
Poston (Kansas) and North Oklahoma prospects and exploring its Colby (Kansas) and Sacramento
prospects. At present, American Petro-Hunter holds working interests in 10 projects in various stages of
development. The company is already generating revenues from two wells at its Poston project and is in
the process of completing a second well at its North Oklahoma project that may be 500 barrels per day
Lisa Springer, CFA -Bio and disclaimer: http://www.investorideas.com/About/Lisa-Springer-CFA/
The author, Lisa Springer, was compensated for writing this article and doesn't own shares of any of the
companies mentioned in this article.
More info: American Petro-Hunter, Inc. (OTC.BB: AAPH)
The Company is a goal-oriented exploration and production (E&P) Company aiming to become an
intermediate level oil and gas producer within 12 months. The Company is in production at the Poston
Project in Trego County Kansas with new drilling activity and production underway at the North Oklahoma
Oil Project. With the achievable target of becoming a 1000 BOE producer as our goal, American Petro-
Hunter is actively on the hunt for domestic petroleum assets. www.americanpetrohunter.com
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