Two important trends affecting the expected growth of global gas markets are (1) the shift by many industrialized countries from coal-fired electricity generation to the use of natural gas to generate electricity and (2) the industrialization of the heavily populated Asian countries of India and China. This paper surveys discovered gas in stranded conventional gas accumulations and presents estimates of the cost of developing and producing stranded gas in selected countries. Stranded gas is natural gas in discovered or identified fields that is not currently commercially producible for either physical or economic reasons. Published reserves of gas at the global level do not distinguish between volumes of gas in producing fields and volumes in nonproducing fields. Data on stranded gas reported here-that is the volumes, geographical distribution, and size distributions of stranded gas fields at the country and regional level-are based on the examination of individual-field data and represent a significant improvement in information available to industry and government decision makers. Globally, stranded gas is pervasive, but large volumes in large accumulations are concentrated in only a few areas. The cost component of the paper focuses on stranded conventional gas accumulations in Africa and South America that have the potential to augment supplies to Europe. The methods described for the computation of extraction and transport costs are innovative in that they use information on the sizes and geographical distribution of the identified stranded gas fields. The costs are based on industry data specific to the country and geologic basin where the stranded gas is located. Gas supplies to Europe can be increased significantly at competitive costs by the development of stranded gas. Net extraction costs of producing the identified gas depend critically on the natural-gas-liquids (NGLs) content, the prevailing prices of liquids, the size of the gas accumulation, and the deposit's location. The diversity of the distribution of stranded gas is one obstacle to the exercise of market power by the Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF). Copyright ?? 2011 Society of Petroleum Engineers.
Additional publication details
Survey of stranded gas and delivered costs to Europe of selected gas resources