Assessment and Forecasting Natural Gas Reserve Appreciation in the Gulf Coast Basin

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Reserve appreciation, also called reserve growth, is the increase in the estimated ultimate recovery (the sum of year end reserves and cumulative production) from fields subsequent to discovery from extensions, infield drilling, improved recovery of in-place resources, new pools, and intrapool completions. In recent years, reserve appreciation has become a major component of total U.S. annual natural gas reserve additions. Over the past 15 years, reserve appreciation has accounted for more than 80 percent of all annual natural gas reserve additions in the U.S. lower 48 states (Figure 1). The rise of natural gas reserve appreciation basically came with the ... continued below

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Kim, E.M. & Fisher, W.L. October 1, 1997.

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Reserve appreciation, also called reserve growth, is the increase in the estimated ultimate recovery (the sum of year end reserves and cumulative production) from fields subsequent to discovery from extensions, infield drilling, improved recovery of in-place resources, new pools, and intrapool completions. In recent years, reserve appreciation has become a major component of total U.S. annual natural gas reserve additions. Over the past 15 years, reserve appreciation has accounted for more than 80 percent of all annual natural gas reserve additions in the U.S. lower 48 states (Figure 1). The rise of natural gas reserve appreciation basically came with the judgment that reservoirs were much more geologically complex than generally thought, and they hold substantial quantities of natural gas in conventionally movable states that are not recovered by typical well spacing and vertical completion practices. Considerable evidence indicates that many reservoirs show significant geological variations and compartmentalization, and that uniform spacing, unless very dense, does not efficiently tap and drain a sizable volume of the reservoir (Figure 2). Further, by adding reserves within existing infrastructure and commonly by inexpensive recompletion technology in existing wells, reserve appreciation has become the dominant factor in ample, low-cost natural gas supply. Although there is a wide range in natural gas reserve appreciation potential by play and that potential is a function of drilling and technology applied, current natural gas reserve appreciation studies are gross, averaging wide ranges, disaggregated by broad natural gas provinces, and calculated mainly as a function of time. A much more detailed analysis of natural gas reserve appreciation aimed at assessing long-term sustainability, technological amenability, and economic factors, however, is necessary. The key to such analysis is a disaggregation to the play level. Plays are the geologically homogeneous subdivision of the universe of hydrocarbon pools within a basin. Typically, fields within a play share common hydrocarbon type, reservoir genesis, trapping mechanism, and source. Plays provide the comprehensive reference needed to more efficiently develop reservoirs, to extend field limits, and to better assess opportunities for intrafield exploration and development in mature natural gas provinces. Play disaggregation reveals current production trends and highlights areas for further exploration by identifying and emphasizing areas for potential reserve appreciation.

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12 p.

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OSTI as DE97054222

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  • Natural gas conference, Houston, TX (United States), 24-27 Mar 1997

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  • Other: DE97054222
  • Report No.: DOE/MC/33148--97/C0869
  • Report No.: CONF-970367--
  • Grant Number: FG21-96MC33148
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 643587
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc690696

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  • October 1, 1997

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  • Aug. 14, 2015, 8:43 a.m.

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  • Nov. 10, 2015, 9:56 p.m.

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Kim, E.M. & Fisher, W.L. Assessment and Forecasting Natural Gas Reserve Appreciation in the Gulf Coast Basin, article, October 1, 1997; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc690696/: accessed November 20, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.