ST. TAMMANY PARISH -- Helis Oil and Gas sent out a news release Tuesday saying that "following a lengthy review of the geologic, engineering and other data from its exploratory well in rural St. Tammany Parish, Helis Oil & Gas has concluded that it will not proceed with further operations."

The move would bring to an end the controversial project on the Northshore that met with a lot of citizen opposition.

Helis overcame that opposition to get the approval to move forward on the project, however, a few months in, the results were not what the company was hoping to achieve.

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"Helis has determined that the prospect lacks appropriate commercial viability so the company will not pursue the project any further. Helis intends to permanently abandon the well and secure the site in accordance with regulatory requirements and its leases," said Greg Beuerman, spokesperson for Helis Oil & Gas.

The company said it has suspended the air, water quality and noise monitoring. The results of that monitoring will still be available to the public through the state Office of Conservation.

Helis said it had estimated the potential for commercial success at the site to be 30-35 percent, so while company leaders said they were disappointed, the company was not surprised by the outcome.

“While we are disappointed the well was unsuccessful, exploratory projects such as this one involve a substantial risk of failure which we accept as part of our business. We can terminate this project knowing that we conducted our operations without a single complaint regarding noise, traffic or environmental impacts,” said Helis President David Kerstein. “Throughout this long and often arduous process, Helis Oil & Gas set a new standard for proactively addressing even the most unfounded concerns, expending far more time and money than required to reassure the public of our ability to conduct our work safely, protect the environment and parish quality of life. To the letter, Helis employees and contractors conducted themselves professionally and helped the company keep its commitments to the people of St. Tammany,” Kerstein said.

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