China has initiated its second 10,000-meter deep drilling project of the year in pursuit of accessing ultra-deep reservoirs of natural gas. According to Xinhua News Agency, China National Petroleum Corp. (CNPC) commenced drilling the Shendi Chuanke 1 Well in Sichuan province on Thursday. The well is designed to reach a depth of 10,520 meters (approximately 6.5 miles). This endeavor comes after CNPC’s previous drilling operation in Xinjiang, which began in May and was recognized as the deepest drilling project ever undertaken in China at that time. While the earlier drilling project in Xinjiang had an experimental purpose, focusing on testing drilling technologies and gathering data on the Earth’s internal structure, the current undertaking in Sichuan aims to explore ultra deep natural gas reserves, as per Xinhua’s report. Sichuan, renowned for its spicy cuisine, breathtaking mountain vistas, and iconic pandas, also hosts some of China’s significant shale gas reserves. Despite the vast potential, the state-owned oil giants have faced challenges in extracting these resources due to the complex underground geology and challenging terrains. China’s government has been urging energy companies to bolster domestic production in recent years to ensure fuel security amid power shortages, geopolitical tensions, and global price fluctuations.