Milestones – Trinidad & Tobago

  • 1857 First well drilled for oil in Trinidad – 61 metres deep in the vicinity of the Pitch Lake by the Merrimac Company
  • 1865 Walter Darwent founded the Paria Oil Co. to drill for oil in south Trinidad
  • 1866 First successful oil well drilled by Walter Darwent at Aripero
  • 1901 Randolph Rust and Mr. Lee Lum drilled and tested a well which produced 455 liters of oil in 2 hours.
  • 1903 Guyaguayare No. 3…first well to be drilled with rotary equipment.
  • 1908 Commercial oil production begins in Trinidad near the Pitch Lake, La Brea
  • 1910 First export cargo of crude oil was shipped by tanker at Brighton, La Brea
  • 1912 Small refinery built at Point Fortin
  • 1914 Production reached 1 MMB/year and the oil industry employed 1,200.
  • 1919 Refinery capacity increased to 9,000 barrels of oil per day. Sixty-six percent of crude oil produced was refined locally.
  • 1930 Crude oil production increased to 10 million barrels per year.
  • 1932 Electrical well logging introduced in Trinidad.
  • 1933 Trinidad Oilfields Ltd. introduces gas injection in the Forest Reserve Upper Cruse sand.
  • 1937 Widespread labour unrest in the oilfield area.
  • 1940 Refining capacity increased to approximately 285,000 bbl/day
  • 1954 Marine drilling for oil began in the Soldado Field by Trinidad Northern Areas Limited (TRINMAR)
  • 1954 Deepest well drilled on land Apex, Fyzabad Well No. 560 drilled to 16,155 feet.
  • 1955 Production from Soldado oilfield at Trinmar initiated.
  • 1958 First well started on platform 1.2 miles offshore from Brighton.  The platform was designed to accommodate 36 wells, which was a world record for this type of platform.
  • 1959 Federation Chemicals Ltd. pioneered the use of natural gas in Trinidad and Tobago as a chemical feedstock in the manufacture of ammonia.
  • 1961 Galeota No. 1 first exploratory well drilled offshore the East Coast of Trinidad. Well produced oil but considered uneconomic.
  • 1962 Formation of the Ministry of Petroleum and Mines.
  • 1967 A new production high of 65 million barrels per year was achieved.
  • 1968 First commercial oil discovery off the East Coast of Trinidad (off Pt. Radix)… well OPR-2.
  • 1969 New Petroleum Legislation enacted Act No. 46 of 1969.
  • 1971 Drilling began off the North Coast of Trinidad…..natural gas discovered.
  • 1972 Commercial production began offshore the East Coast of Trinidad … from AMOCO’s Teak Platform.
  • 1975 Formation of the National Gas Company for the transmission and sales of natural gas.
  • 1984 Methanol Plant at Point Lisas begins commercial production.
  • 1999 Atlantic LNG starts production with Train I.
  • 2002 MOE begins acquisition of Ultra deep water 2D seismic survey.
  • 2003 BPTT commissions the world’s largest offshore gas processing facility, Cassia B, capable of producing 2 billion cubic feet of gas a day.
  • 2003 BPTT installs Bombax, BP’s largest diameter marine pipeline worldwide (48″) and one of the largest in the world.
  • 2004 Two new petrochemicals plant established: Atlas Methanol and the N2000
  • 2005 Start of construction of the 56” Cross Island Pipeline (largest in the Western Hemisphere) from Beachfield to Pt. Fortin.
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