An understanding of reserve growth in known oil and gas fields has become a critical component of energy resource analysis. Significant statistical studies of reserve growth have been published in the U.S., whereas little information is available on other regions of the world. It may be expected that in many countries the magnitude of reserve growth is different from that in the U.S. because of differences in reporting systems and in exploration and production practices. This paper describes the results of a reserve growth study in a group of largest oil and gas fields of the Volga-Ural petroleum province, Russia. The dynamics of reserve growth in these fields shows rapid reserve additions during the first 5 years of field exploration and development, which results from intensive step-out and delineation drilling. Later reserve growth is slow and is related to improvements in recovery technologies and discoveries of new pools and extensions. These two stages of reserve growth are described by two different groups of empirical models. A comparison of these models with the models developed for the lower 48 states and Gulf Coast offshore of the U.S. demonstrates that the reserve growth in the Volga-Ural province is significantly lower than in the U.S. The proposed models may be used for assessment of future reserve additions in known fields of countries that presently have or recently had a centrally-planned economic system.
Additional publication details
Oil and gas reserve growth-a model for the Volga-Ural Province, Russia