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Re: [hreg] Fwd: [nhnenews] PO: Huge Natural Gas Field 'Discovered' In Texas

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  • Roxanne Boyer
    This find sounds significant, 26 trillion cubic feet. Until you hear that the US consumes more than that in one year (See the DOE - Energy Information
    Message 1 of 2 , Dec 3, 2005
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      This "find" sounds significant, 26 trillion cubic feet.  Until you hear that the US consumes more than that in one year (See the DOE - Energy Information Agency web site).  I thought the field was known about for a long time, it is a "poor" quality well and was just too expensive to develop when gas was under $4MCF.

      chasmauch@... wrote:
       
      To: *News List <nhnenews@yahoogroups.com>
      From: NHNE <news@...>
      Date: Fri, 02 Dec 2005 17:47:04 -0700
      Subject: [nhnenews] PO: Huge Natural Gas Field 'Discovered' In Texas


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      HUGE NATURAL GAS FIELD 'DISCOVERED' IN TEXAS
      MAJOR ENERGY FIRMS SEEING BENEFIT IN DEVELOPING DOMESTIC SOURCES
      WorldNetDaily
      November 30, 2005

      http://worldnetdaily.com/news/printer-friendly.asp?ARTICLE_ID=47639

      Though it's been in production for nearly 25 years, a huge natural gas field
      in Texas is now drawing the attention of major energy companies -- but only
      after independent operations proved its worth.

      Fort Worth, Texas, is built on top the Barnett Shale natural gas field, a
      field so vast that the U.S. Geological Service estimates it contains some 26
      trillion cubic feet of yet-to-be-discovered natural gas. Estimates are that
      as much as 160 billion cubic feet of natural gas are in place per square
      mile in the Barnett Shale formation. The Barnett Shale field is the largest
      gas-producing field in Texas, covering some 15 counties in the northern part
      of the state. The core area comprises about 120,000 net acres that stretch
      north from Fort Worth to the western outskirts of Denton.

      The field was undiscovered until 1981 when independent Mitchell Energy
      drilled the first well. The largest operator in the Barnett Shale field is
      Devon Energy Corporation, one of America's largest and most successful
      independent oil and natural gas companies, headquartered in Oklahoma City.
      In January 2002, Devon completed the acquisition of the field's pioneer,
      Mitchell Energy. Today, Devon operates more than 1,700 wells into the
      Barnett Shale core area, wells that today produce more than 550 million
      cubic feet of natural gas per day.

      According to Brian Engel, manager of public affairs for Devon, the company's
      success in large part derives from developing a light sand, water fracturing
      technology that permits efficient natural gas exploration from the field.

      "The Barnett Shale formation," says Mr. Engel, "has rightfully emerged as
      the largest natural gas field in Texas and one of the most important natural
      gas fields in the nation."

      Now that the independents have proven Barnett Shale to be hugely productive,
      major companies including ExxonMobil, ChevronTexaco, ConocoPhillips, BP and
      Shell have moved in to buy up production rights.

      "It makes sense," explained Tom Biracree, senior financial editor with John
      S. Herold Inc., an energy research and investment valuation firm based in
      Norwalk, Conn. "The industry is seeing a decided trend moving toward the
      development of on-shore natural gas resources in the continental U.S."

      Why? "It's an economic market play," explained Biracree. "With the price of
      natural gas at $10 per thousand cubic feet, not $2, it becomes very
      attractive for the major industry players to focus more attention on
      exploring for natural gas right here at home."

      Biracree continued, "Developing natural gas resources in the continental
      U.S. also permits the major companies to avoid the political risk of working
      overseas. The rules of the game don't change here like they can when you're
      dealing with a foreign government."

      Biracree noted that the industry is learning today how to explore deeper and
      extract more natural gas profitably from what, in years past, were
      considered riskier enterprises.

      "We have growing expertise in the technologies which make extraction of
      natural gas from shale profitable," said Biracree. "Besides, today the
      demand for natural gas is growing in the United States and the market has
      established very attractive prices. It's the same principle why Wal-Mart
      trucks in snow shovels in a snow storm." In other words, opportunities like
      Barnett Shale are market-driven.

      Technically, the U.S. Geological Survey describes the Barnet Shale formation
      as the "Greater Newark East Frac-Barrier Continuous Barnett Shale Gas
      Assessment Unit." The rock is identified as a Mississippian formation,
      dating back some 330 million years. Geologists describe the formation as
      "source rock" or "reservoir rock," assuming that the organic material in the
      metamorphic shale has morphed into the "kerogen" traditionally assumed as
      needed to produce natural gas.

      Barnett Shale is deeply fractured, with fissures that tended to be sealed by
      calcium carbonate. The field went undiscovered until Mitchell Energy
      experimented with employing large gel fracture methods to open the wells to
      natural gas. The full potential of the field waited for the light sand,
      water fracture technology developed by Devon Energy Corporation, a
      technology that fractures the shale so the natural gas can be extracted. The
      Barnett Shale formation lies at a depth of between 1 to 2 miles below the
      surface, with the shale running some 400 to 500 feet thick.

      Commented Jerome Corsi, Ph.D., co-author of "Black Gold Stranglehold: The
      Myth of Scarcity and the Politics of Oil": "With the field only discovered
      in 1981, the Barnett Shale natural gas resources were not known when Shell
      Oil geologist M. King Hubbert started worrying about 'peak production.' With
      natural gas resources this abundant, we can be reasonably assured there
      remains a large quantity of natural gas to be extracted at home, right on
      the continental U.S. That abundance should be apparent even to those who
      want to maintain the doctrinaire position that the Barnett Shale natural gas
      is organic in nature."

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