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Relative importance of physical and economic factors in Appalachian coalbed gas assessment

International Journal of Coal Geology

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DOI: 10.1016/S0166-5162(98)00032-9

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Abstract

In the 1995 National Assessment of Oil and Gas Resources prepared by the U.S. Geological Survey, only 20% of the assessed technically recoverable Appalachian Province coalbed gas resources were economic. Physical and economic variables are examined to explain the disparity between economic and technically recoverable coalbed gas. The Anticline and Syncline plays of the Northern Appalachian Basin, which account for 77% of the assessed technically recoverable coalbed gas, are not economic. Analysis shows marginal reductions in costs or rate of return will not turn these plays into commercial successes. Physical parameters that determine ultimate well recoverability and the rate of gas recovery are primary reasons the Northern Appalachian Basin plays are non-commercial. If the application of new well stimulation technology could offset slow gas desorption rates, Appalachian Province economic gas could increase to more then 70% of the technically recoverable gas. Similarly, if operators are able to develop strategies to selectively drill plays by avoiding dry holes and non-commercial occurrences, the economic fraction of technically recoverable gas could increase to over half.In the 1995 National Assessment of Oil and Gas Resources prepared by the U.S. Geological Survey, only 20% of the assessed technically recoverable Appalachian Province coalbed gas resources were economic. Physical and economic variables are examined to explain the disparity between economic and technically recoverable coalbed gas. The Anticline and Syncline plays of the Northern Appalachian Basin, which account for 77% of the assessed technically recoverable coalbed gas, are not economic. Analysis shows marginal reductions in costs or rate of return will not turn these plays into commercial successes. Physical parameters that determine ultimate well recoverability and the rate of gas recovery are primary reasons the Northern Appalachian Basin plays are non-commercial. If the application of new well stimulation technology could offset slow gas desorption rates, Appalachian Province economic gas could increase to more then 70% of the technically recoverable gas. Similarly, if operators are able to develop strategies to selectively drill plays by avoiding dry holes and non-commercial occurrences, the economic fraction of technically recoverable gas could increase to over half.

Additional Publication Details

Publication type:
Article
Publication Subtype:
Journal Article
Title:
Relative importance of physical and economic factors in Appalachian coalbed gas assessment
Series title:
International Journal of Coal Geology
DOI:
10.1016/S0166-5162(98)00032-9
Volume
38
Issue:
1-2
Year Published:
1998
Language:
English
Publisher:
Elsevier Sci B.V.
Publisher location:
Amsterdam, Netherlands
Larger Work Type:
Article
Larger Work Subtype:
Journal Article
Larger Work Title:
International Journal of Coal Geology
First page:
47
Last page:
59
Number of Pages:
13