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TitleEconomic appraisal of shale gas resources, an example from the Horn River shale gas play, Canada
AuthorChen, Z; Osadetz, K G; Chen, X
SourcePetroleum Science vol. 12, issue 4, 2015 p. 712-725, https://doi.org/10.1007/s12182-015-0050-9
Year2015
Alt SeriesEarth Sciences Sector, Contribution Series 20150145
PublisherSpringer
Documentserial
Lang.English
Mediapaper; on-line; digital
File formatpdf
ProvinceBritish Columbia
NTS94K; 94J; 94N; 94O
AreaHorn River Basin
Lat/Long WENS-124.0000 -122.0000 60.0000 58.5000
Subjectseconomic geology; drilling; petroleum; petroleum exploration; petroleum resources; economic analyses; unconventional shale gas resources; discounted cash flow model; random drilling strategy; drilling order; risk aversion
Illustrationslocation maps; schematic cross-sections; graphs; histograms
ProgramShale-hosted petroleum ressource assesment, Geoscience for New Energy Supply (GNES)
AbstractDevelopment of unconventional shale gas resources involves intensive capital investment accompanying large commercial production uncertainties. Economic appraisal, bringing together multidisciplinary project data and information and providing likely economic outcomes for various development scenarios, forms the core of business decision-making. This paper uses a discounted cash-flow (DCF) model to evaluate the economic outcome of shale gas development in the Horn River Basin, northeastern British Columbia, Canada. Through numerical examples, this study demonstrates that the use of a single average decline curve for the whole shale gas play is the equivalent of the results from a random drilling process. Business decision based on a DCF model using a single decline curve could be vulnerable to drastic changes of shale gas productivity across the play region. A random drilling model takes those drastic changes in well estimated ultimate recovery (EUR) and decline rates into account in the economic appraisal, providing more information useful for business decisions. Assuming a natural gas well head price of $4/mcf and using a 10% of discount rate, the results from this study suggest that a random drilling strategy (e.g one that does not regard well EURs), could lead to a negative NPV; whereas a drilling sequence that gives priority to developing those wells with larger EURs earlier in the drilling history could result in a positive NPV with various payback time (PBT) and internal rate of return (IRR). Using a random drilling assumption, the breakeven price is $4.2/MCF with more than 10 years of payout time. In contrast, if drilling order is strictly proportional to well EURs, the result is a much better economic outcome with a breakeven price below the assumed well head price accompanied by a higher IRR.
Summary(Plain Language Summary, not published)
Development of unconventional shale gas resources involves intensive capital investment with large commercial production uncertainties. Economic appraisal, bringing together multidisciplinary project data and information and providing economic outcomes for various development scenarios, forms the core of business decisions. This paper uses a discounted cash-flow model to evaluate the economic outcome of shale gas development in the Horn River Basin, northeastern British Columbia. Through numerical examples, this study demonstrates that the use of a single average decline curve for the whole play is vulnerable to drastic changes of productivity across the play.
GEOSCAN ID296810