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Executive session on 'Unconventional Regulations'

Thursday 04 June 2015, 09:30 - 12:30, Room N102

Chairmen: M. Marzo (University of Barcelona)
  M. Baena (Repsol)



Since 2011, the impact of the unconventional boom in the United States has been felt at the global level. While the US economy is resisting the recession, the rest of the world is struggling, being one of the drivers the access to the energy.
Unconventional development outside North America is taking place mainly in no mature basins. Such areas are more a frontier in terms of exploration and development.
In order to identify favorable geologic and engineer areas for onshore  unconventional targets, a different way of thinking needs to be applied, different from the conventional onshore exploration and alternative from the “American way” when targeting unconventionals.
The challenge is to benefit these differences and build a methodology that allows the industry to properly explore and evaluate, above and below surface, the unconventional potential yet untapped.
The economic return of exploring these plays is strongly tied to the efficiency in the operation and completion, also geology and reservoir quality needs to be well understood from the beginning. But outside US, a lack of drilling has limited the quantity of primary data collected for onshore shale assets.  As a result, explorers, investors, and researchers have had to rely on other methods of play evaluation
With regard to regulatory framework, in the USA oil & gas operations are mainly controlled by the individual state governments with little involvement of Federal authorities. Due to the long history of conventional operations, the same set of regulations are being efficiently applied in the unconventional scenario and operations permitting is implemented in a predictable time frame.
Meanwhile in Europe the industry feels that operations are subject to additional risk as there is no guarantee of adequate fiscal terms and regulatory framework being instated and held.
Europe is still waiting for a regulation to take place to kick-start its unconventional industry. The lack of social support for hydraulic fracturing in several countries remains a major impediment. In the rest of the world – apart from the Vaca Muerta play of Argentina – unconventional activity is still in its embryonic stages.
This session will explore the importance of the integration of all these aspects from the geological knowledge, data integration and the pursuit of the best analogs through the geopolitical and legal aspects, highlighting the importance of having a regulatory framework as key subject to accelerate the process.

Presentations by

E. Diaz Torres (Repsol)
I. Álvarez Fernández (AGGEP)
A. Torello (IOGP)
U. Marseglia (Calfrac)
J. Lima (Schlumberger)
G. Schmidt (Talisman Energy)