Mexican unconventional plays: Geoscience, endowment, and economic considerations
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Copyright © 2018 Society of Petroleum Engineers. Successful activities in the Eagle Ford Shale in Texas through drilling of horizontal wells and completions by use of multistage-hydraulic-fracturing jobs suggest that the potential of shale reservoirs farther south will be quite significant. This observation leads to the objective of this paper: to examine geoscience and engineering data of tight and shale reservoirs in Mexico with a view to estimating the oil and gas endowment, and to determine the economics of developing these plays under current and forecast possible oil and gas prices. Plays considered in this study include the Burgos, Sabinas, Tampico, Tuxpan (Platform), Veracruz, and Chihuahua Basins. Endowment is defined by the US Geological Survey (USGS) (USGS 2000) as the sum of known volumes of oil and gas (cumulative production plus remaining reserves) and undiscovered volumes. The economics of these plays is examined with the use of cumulative long-run supply (or availability) curves. These are presented as crossplots of production costs per barrel of oil or per Mcf of gas vs. endowments for the aggregate of basins, and are very useful to demonstrate how endowment volumes vary at different price levels. It is concluded that the potential of unconventional resources in Mexico is quite significant and will help to change the slope of production rates in the country from negative to positive. As a result, it is anticipated that Mexico will become an important part of the shale-petroleum revolution started in the US.
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