GGMC to develop mechanism to trap natural gas at Diamond


By Devina Samaroo

The Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC) will be developing an apparatus to trap the natural gas that is emanating from a well at Sixth Avenue, Diamond/Grove New Housing Scheme, East Bank Demerara (EBD).

The mechanism will be akin to the one which was constructed in 2009 at a house at Second Bridge, Grove – where a similar ‘gas eruption’ incident had taken place.

Mitchell Prince, a Senior Petroleum Technologist at GGMC, told the Ministry of the Presidency that the next move will be to set up a contraption to conceal the natural gas.

Mitchell Prince, Senior Petroleum Technologist at GGMC

“The plan is to run two sizes of casings into the orifice…we’re going to be using 18-inch casing on the outside and 4-inch diameter casing on the outside,” he stated, in a video recording which was released to the media.

For the second time in less than a decade, a muddy volcanic-like eruption has occurred at a domestic well located in the housing scheme which was formerly a sugarcane plantation, raising questions about how much natural gas is hidden below the surface in that area.

In the first instance that occurred in 2009, there was a heavy presence of natural gas at the house. In fact, the family living there is still accessing natural gas, which they have been using to satisfy their cooking purposes.

Tests conducted by Massy Gas Products, a regional distributor of gas, revealed that there is little presence of methane and hydrogen sulfide at the location which the eruption occurred on Thursday night.

Apparatus developed by GGMC at the house where the incident occurred in 2009 to trap the gas

Prince said it will take him about three weeks to set up the mechanism to seal off the natural gas. But he noted that the implementation depends on how soon he will get the funding to commence the project.

So far, electricity in the area has been disconnected as a precautionary measure and residents have been advised to not engage in activities that are highly flammable such as smoking or cooking.

The incident all started when Sownauth Gorukh was drilling a domestic water well for reasons presently unknown to authorities.

Neighbours said Sownauth seems to be in the water bottling and distribution business.

Authorities are checking their records to see if he had permission to conduct the activity. Sownauth and his family have since evacuated the house.

The Guyana Police Force, Fire Service, Guyana Water Incorporated and other officials were up to late last night on the scene monitoring the situation.

The state of the house where the well exploded [DPI photo]
The eruptions literally sent shockwaves through the streets as nearby houses began to vibrate, causing residents to fear the worst.

The well had spewed a foundation of muddy water and rocks about 30 feet in the air, causing massive destruction to the owner’s and two nearby properties.

Luckily, the two houses were unoccupied.

The destruction of the house at Diamond [DPI photo]
Supermajor giant ExxonMobil, which is preparing to produce oil offshore Guyana, is said to be running some tests to determine the quantity of natural gas located at the well.

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