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Coalbed Methane Study Finds More Gas in Shallower Coals

Going against conventional belief surrounding multizone completion success in coalbed methane wells, more natural gas and less water was found in the shallower coals of the wells tested, according to a study just completed by GST WellDog, a privately held natural gas development research and analysis firm that was tasked with developing coalbed methane development best practices.

The study demonstrated how technical evaluation of coalbed production potential can be used to produce more gas and less water from multizone wells. "We found that the reality of coalbed reservoirs contradicts the conventional wisdom when it comes to multizone completions," said GST WellDog CEO John M. Pope. "Our testing revealed a surprising result -- the shallower coals in this area hold more gas and less water. Clearly, with seam-by-seam testing it is possible to improve the water-gas production ratio for multizone wells and increase operator profit."

The study, performed in partnership with Black Diamond Energy Inc. of Buffalo, WY, involved using technical evaluation of the production potentials of eight different coalbed methane seams to guide how 12 multizone wells intersecting those seams would be completed. Initial and offset production results were correlated to the reservoir tests in order to evaluate how detailed reservoir evaluation affected operator profit and water production from the field development.

The original research grant from the Stripper Well Consortium (SWC) was made to WellDog Inc., which received the bulk of the grant funding prior to its dissolution in December 2007. GST WellDog purchased essentially all of the assets of WellDog Inc. in November 2007 in order to preserve the benefits of that company's technologies.

SWC is an industry-driven consortium that is focused on the development, demonstration and deployment of new technologies needed to improve the production performance of natural gas and petroleum stripper wells. SWC is comprised of natural gas and petroleum producers, service companies, industry consultants, universities and industrial trade organizations. The Strategic Center for Natural Gas, the National Petroleum Technology Office and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority provide base funding and guidance to the consortium.

A summary of the study is available at

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