The Joslyn project, which is operated by French energy major Total, reportedly holds over eight billion barrels of bitumen in place. Recoverable reserves, net to Occidental (Oxy) are estimated at 370 million barrels.

While the project is still in the early stage of development, it has more than 1,800 delineation wells drilled to confirm the resource potential. The project is being developed by steam-assisted gravity drainage and surface mining.

Oxy expects to spend approximately $2 billion over a number of years to develop the reserves. Production, net to Oxy, from the mining operation is expected to commence in 2014, at approximately 11,000 barrels of oil per day (bopd) and grow to a plateau of approximately 31,000bopd.

Ray Irani, Oxy’s chairman and CEO, said: This acquisition is consistent with our strategy of focusing on long lived, large resource in place projects. This is an outstanding project which will provide a significant supply of oil on the North American continent.