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Project Overview

The D3 Project is located in the Free State Province, onshore South Africa approximately 250km southwest of Johannesburg and nearby to the towns of Welkom, Virginia and Hennenman. Immediately to the west of the D3 Project lies the Renergen Limited (ASX:RLT) Virginia Gas Field which is currently producing liquid natural gas for sale. The D3 Project consists of Exploration Right, ER315 (ER315), Exploration Right Application, ERA341, Technical Co-operation Permit 240 and Technical Co-operation Permit 235.

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Exploration Right 315 (ER315)

The initial focus of the Company is the exploration and where possible, the development of the identified resources within ER315.

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Geological Setting

The Permits are situated in the eastern part of the Greater Karoo Basin, a Permian aged large terrestrial and glacial basin in eastern South Africa (Figure 2). Within the Karoo Basin is the Ecca Group coal sequence which contains multiple thin-bedded coal seams that have some coal seam gas potential.

Below the Karoo Basin unconformably lies the Precambrian Witwatersrand Basin, which contains the Free State Gold Field Welkom. The Free State Gold Field is a major graben structure that is bounded on the west by the “Border” fault and on the east by the “deBron” fault. Displacement in 56 the order of 1000 meters is encountered along the strike of the deBron fault. The displacement is towards the west. In certain areas the fault zone amounts to 150m in width and is partly filled with secondary quartz and calcite with the resulting in permeability along the strike distance of the fault although this can vary considerably.

These ‘basement’ lithologies have been tectonically flexed into a large east to west trending anticline that is in turn bisected by a large extensional graben (low area) and many faults with significant throw (offset) that extend deep into the earth’s crust, as shown in Figure 2 and Figure 3 below.

Figure 1. Map of D3 Energy portfolio, Free State, South Africa

Figure 2. West to East Cross-section across the Virginia Gas Field and into ER315 (Red box)

Figure 3. Map of Major Faults ER315 (Green) into the Virginia Gas Production License and Reserve Area.

Unconformably overlying the Witwatersrand Supergroup is the Ventersdorp Supergroup of primarily volcanic lithologies. Many of these faults do not extend upwards beyond the upper Ventersdorp Supergroup. Above this unconformity lies the Karoo Supergroup, a Permian aged sedimentary section composed of sandstones, coal seams and carbonaceous shales. There is almost always a basal glacial deposit on top of the unconformity that separates the Karoo from the Ventersdorp known as the Dwyka Tillite. The Witwatersrand and Ventersdorp Supergroups experienced greenschist metamorphism and are both extensively fractured, due to sustained tectonic activity.

The primary source of the methane gas is microbial in origin from deep within the Witwatersrand Supergroup with groundwater circulating through the large faults and coming in contact with bacteria living deep within the Archaean crust. Methane isotope studies demonstrate that very little, if any, of the methane can be attributed to the Karoo coal beds or the carbonaceous shales. Thus, methane is a biogenic and a continuing regenerating resource.

There is anecdotal evidence of historic blowers within the area of ER315 producing methane gas for over forty years without any discernible pressure drop, however there are no quantified studies to date

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Geology Structure
of ER315

ER315 is situated towards the east of de Bron fault. In the northern part of the ER315, a major horst structure i.e. de Bron horst is present between the de Bron and Homestead faults respectively. No gold bearing sediments occur in the horst. Detailed drilling defined the eastern limit of this horst structure along the Homestead fault. East of the Homestead fault, gold bearing sediments were intersected again.

Two major fault systems, i.e. the Virginia and Ventersburg faults, occur in the eastern part of ER315. The displacement again was towards the west. Despite these major north-south striking structures several east-west faults are also present or could be extended into the Motuoane License. The east-west structures are the oldest structures in the Witwatersrand basin. Many kimberlite fissures and Karoo age dolerite dykes intruded into the younger strata along these structures. The east-west structures were right laterally displaced by north-south striking structures resulting in a very complex tectonic environment. The importance of these structures is vested in the presence of methane gas occurrence associated in or in close proximity of the structures.

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Potential for Gas at ER315

The Virginia Fault, which has yielded large volumes of methane gas in nearby gold and gas projects, is present within ER315 and constitutes a major area to be explored. The gas potential of this fault and the one directly below it must be considered gas targets.

Also existing within ER315 is the Ventersburg Fault, which requires further investigation to ascertain its potential as a gas target. Outside of ER315, potential gas targets can be present where extensions of the east-west striking faults intersect the Ventersburg Fault. A major gas yielding borehole, directly in or in very close proximity to the Homestead fault occurs on the farm Nooitgetdacht in the northern part of ER315. The Company intends on drilling at least one initial well in the areas of the Nooitgetdacht blower boreholes as part of its initial drilling program.

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Other Projects

Technical Co-operation Permit 235 and Permit 240

On 23 October 2023, the Company was granted two Technical Co-operation Permits being TCP 235 and TCP240 (the TCPs). TCP 235 covers an area of 14,810 ha and TCP240 covers an area of 11,892 ha. 

The TCPs are each granted for a period of 12 months over the course of which time, the Company will undertake low-cost desktop studies to form an initial assessment of the prospectivity of the area covering the TCPs. At the end of the 12-month period, the Company may apply for the issue of an Exploration Right over each of the areas of the TCPs and the Company holds the exclusive right to apply for and be granted an Exploration Right in respect of those areas

Exploration Right Application 341 

The Company has submitted an application for an exploration right to explore for petroleum, natural gas, gas and condensate, which has been accepted by the regulator, PASA. The Company intends on progressing this application upon being admitted to the Official List, including obtaining relevant environmental authorisation approvals. Along with the TCPs, the Company views ERA341 as having the potential to add valuable additional exploration upside to ER315.