- French oil company Total has announced its plans to exploit tar sands and other renewable energies in central African country of Congo.
Company's Sustainable Development and Environment Manager, Jean Michel Gires told 6th Global Forum on Sustainable Development in Brazzaville that Total has interest in both oil and gas production but said it is extending its production to tar sands.
"Total is taking an interest in other latitudes, because we have a presence on the issue in Venezuela, Canada and Madagascar," Mr Gires said.
He said Total is interested in other opportunities in Madagascar and other European countries. "This is a long-term project and we must find good technology, good schemes to develop these extra heavy oils without polluting and impacting too notoriously on the environment," he said.
He said oil sands have distinction of being developed on land, while oil activity takes place on shore and offshore.
"I hope we will not only be present in the oil and gas, but also in renewable energy, biomass, solar," Mr Gires said without excluding possibility of intervening in the production of biofuel.
In 2004, Total group represented 62 percent of Congo's oil production, which is likely to increase by 35 percent following an operation of deposit in Moho Bilondo (south) considered one of the greatest oil wells in the country.
Last May, Italian-based company ENI was the first oil company to reach an agreement with Congo for oil sands development in areas of Tchikatanga and Tchikatanga-Makola, about 70 kilometres from Pointe-Noire.
According to preliminary studies on a portion of 100 kilometres square, these two areas that cover an area of 1,750 kilometres square contain reserves estimated over 2.5 billion barrels.
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