Oil company ExxonMobil Corp has reportedly announced a proposal submitted to the ANH (National Hydrocarbons Agency), to execute a pilot project for fracking, also known as hydraulic fracturing, in Columbia.

According to the ANH, the company has applied for the ability to conduct fracking explorations in the Valle Medio del Magdalena basin in Columbia.

ExxonMobil confirmed the submission of the proposal to the ANH in an email but has declined to provide any further details pertaining to the project.

The approval of the Platero project will present ExxonMobil with an opportunity to join forces with Ecopetrol , a prominent state-owned oil firm in Columbia. It will also become the 2nd company to initiate a pilot project for fracking in the nation.

Armando Zamora, President of the ANH has reportedly been quoted as stating that Columbia is making significant progress in improving the viability of oil & gas extraction efforts from non-conventional sources with the ExxonMobil proposal, given the company’s expansive experience in this kind of project.

The ANH will have time until March 29th, 2021, to evaluate the plan, following the submission of ExxonMobil’s proposal.

For the uninitiated, the advancement of non-conventional deposits of energy, including hydraulic fracturing for coal bed methane and shale gas is extremely polarizing in Columbia at present, with the commercial development of deposits like these currently forbidden in the nation.

Pilot projects for hydraulic fracturing in the nation are geared towards gathering adequate scientific data, which can be used to influence decisions regarding non-conventional energy deposits in the future.

Although many energy firms have long claimed that fracking and similar non-conventional sources of hydrocarbon are essential to the economy and self-sufficiency of energy in Columbia, environmental activists have warned against the practice, claiming it to be a threat to communities and the environment.

Source Credit: https://www.reuters.com/business/energy/exxonmobil-submits-proposal-colombia-fracking-pilot-project-2021-03-17/