St. Lawrence Lowlands: An Emerging Shale Gas Play
Junex (TSX-V: JNX) is a junior oil and gas exploration company that holds exploration rights on more than 4 million acres of land located in the Appalachian Basin in the Province of Québec. Several recent discoveries in the United States and Eastern Canada have stimulated exploration in Québec, whose sedimentary basin is located in a favourable geological setting for oil and gas discovery. Junex’s strategy consists of entering into partnerships with other exploration companies in order to reduce exploration risk. In parallel to its exploration efforts, Junex’s goal is to achieve positive cash flows from its natural brine and drilling services operations. Junex also owns approximately 9.4% of the issued and outstanding shares of Petrolia Inc. and 1.1% of the issued and outstanding shares of Gastem Inc., both of which are junior explorers listed on the TSX Venture Exchange.
In partnership with Forest Oil Corporation, Junex is at the heart of the new development occurring in the Utica Shale in the St. Lawrence Lowlands between Montreal and Quebec City. Junex holds more than 1.1 million net acres in this region. According to the Company, nearly 488,653 acres contain significant potential for unconventional resources of the shale gas type of which Junex owns 252,496 net acres located in the area identified by Forest Oil as a deep thermogenic shale gas prospect. Other properties located on the north shore of the St. Lawrence offer good potential for the development of shallower biogenic shale gas. Moreover, on more than 300,000 acres of land held 100% by Junex along both shores of the St. Lawrence River, the Company intends to undertake geologic work including the analysis of thermal maturity and the drilling of wells to evaluate the potential of the Lorraine and Utica Shales. The Company believes that these permits are prospective for Lorraine and/or Utica shale gas and the results of these efforts should provide additional information to verify the Company’s interpretation. Gas production from similar organic-rich shaly sequences has experienced spectacular growth in the United States in recent years, in particular in the Barnett Shales in Texas, which are currently the most prolific. At the beginning of April 2008, Junex’s American partner, Forest Oil, compared the Utica Shales, which are present in the St. Lawrence Lowlands, to those of the Barnett. Forest Oil also announced its intention to drill three horizontal wells in 2008 in order to test the validity of the concept play.
The St. Lawrence Lowlands basin is also prospective for exploration of the Ordovician Trenton / Black River, which is very prolific in the state of New York where a subsidiary of Talisman Energy Inc. has realized success during recent years. Junex still holds a 100% working interest on the Trenton / Black River geological horizon in all the 1.1 million acreage of the permit located in the St. Lawrence River Lowlands. During the course of Summer 2008, the Company expects to drill at least one deep well targeting the Trenton / Black River in the areas of Contrecoeur and Bécancour, right next door to Talisman’s Gentilly gas discovery.
Corporate Profile on Stockhouse
Jean-Yves Lavoie Ing.
Jean-Yves Lavoie is Chairman and Co-Founder of Junex, which was created in 1999 and was first listed on the stock market in June 2001. He was employed by SOQUIP as a petroleum engineer from 1974 to 1980, after which time he remained active as a technical consultant and drilling engineer on several oil and gas projects in Quebec and overseas. These various experiences either prior to or subsequent to production have permitted him to refine his entrepreneurship qualities. As President of Les Ressources Naturelles Jaltin Inc. he, among other things, initiated the creation of the natural gas underground storage at Pointe-du-Lac. This was a first in Quebec and also a first worldwide to be undertaken in non-consolidated sediments. Mr. Lavoie is a member of l’Ordre des Ingénieurs du Québec as well as the Association of Engineers, Geologists and Geophysicists of Alberta.