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GRI: Hidden Treasures Still in Western Canada

GRI: Hidden Treasures Still in Western Canada

The GRI's latest report indicates producers won't run out of work anytime soon in the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin (WCSB), which is estimated to have 166 Tcf in new pool potential and a 31.4 Tcf reserve appreciation potential. Because of these positive estimates, the GRI said the region could surpass 8 Tcf of production by 2015.

More than 50% of the new pool assessment comes from the Foothills region of the WCSB. The GRI estimates 85 Tcf of new gas potential in the play.

Included in this region is the Ft. Liard area, which the GRI calls "one of the most exciting developments in Canada in recent years." Estimated totals of undiscovered gas in Ft. Liard are 19 Tcf. And there is more to come. Development of the play will most likely move north, the GRI said, toward the Beaufort/Mackenzie Delta, which has undiscovered resources between 53 and 55 Tcf.

New plays are also expected to emerge with deeper exploration activity. Currently, most of the completion activity takes place in the 0-5,000 foot interval, the GRI said. "This activity is adding to the deliverability but it is uncertain how much of this represents new gas reserves. The industry must move more aggressively into the deeper parts of the basin." There is a large untapped strata volume below 10,000 feet, the association added.

Besides the Foothills area, the report also covers the Williston Basin, central and southeastern Alberta and the British Columbia plains. While Alberta rates high in both new pool and reserve appreciation potential, the central and western portion of BC is the one area in the WCSB where it is not thought significant oil or gas potential exists. For a copy of the report, call (703) 526-7832 or send an email to baseline@gri.org.

John Norris

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