Video: Assessment of Government Incentives and Development Strategies to Revitalize Mature Heavy Oilfields in the Peruvian Jungle
- Nosser A. Jurado (National Bank Financial Inc.) | Victor A. Huerta (Universidad Nacional de Ingenería)
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- Society of Petroleum Engineers
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- 2019. Copyright is retained by the author. This presentation is distributed by SPE with the permission of the author. Contact the author for permission to use material from this video.
- Heavy Oil, Royalty Incentives, IOR
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Mature heavy oilfields in the Northern Peruvian Jungle have produced oil for more than 40 years under primary recovery mechanisms (cold methods). As these fields are exploited by a strong water drive assisted with ESPs, total oil production has surpassed more than 1 billion barrels of oil with an average 15% primary recovery factor; ultimate recovery is expected to account for 17% at an economic limit of approximately 98% water cut. According to the 2017 Annual Book of Reserves and Contingent Resources of Peru, heavy oil contributes approximately 72% of the total hydrocarbon potential in the area (∼543 mmbbl of 759 mmbbl of 2P+2C volumes). Unfortunately, these heavy oil resources can not be developed and produced without a considerable investment in infrastructure (pipelines, surface facilities), as well as a source of diluent or light oil for its transportation.
This study explores the development options (technical an economic) to produce heavy oil resources at commercial rates and showcases three optimization scenarios of higher recovery efficiency (additional 5%, 10% and 15% RF) utilizing current technology and sensitizing their economic variables with the main objective of increasing the net present value at the basin level. This is achieved by exploring and validating synergy strategies available in the basin and proposes investment for the Norperuano pipeline revamp to pump light oil/diluent to heavy oilfields (e.g Block 67) and make transportation of volumes currently classified as resources feasible. Lastly, this paper shows the current royalty framework in the Loreto region on a block basis and explores the financing alternatives to foster development and exploration activities in the North Peruvian Jungle heavy oilfields.
The workflow starts with identifying heavy oil development strategies, prioritizing and selecting the most appropriate technologies to optimize production performance and increase recovery efficiency; then, infrastructure options and financing alternatives are carefully reviewed to ensure heavy oil is produced with an appropriate amount of diluent. Finally, royalty and other tax incentives are suggested to ensure a profitable exploitation of heavy oil resources. Typically, primary recovery factors for heavy oilfields range between 10 to 15% with several alternatives for development such as multilateral drilling, steam flooding and HASD which would at least double production rates and increase recovery factors by 10% to 15%. Pilot tests of thermal recovery methods are strongly recommended for some fields in early development stage such as the Bartra field in Block 192 and the Raya and Paiche fields in Blocks 39 and 67 respectively. In order to handle new production rates, modifications to the Norperuano pipeline are proposed; additional in-situ loops and a parallel new pipeline are suggested, not only to ensure diluent/light oil transportation to supply the heavy oilfields, but also to increase transportation capacity of diluted oil to surface storage facilities and to the Refinery Complex in Talara; located on Peru's northern Pacific coast which is currently undergoing an expansion from 65,000 bopd to 95,000 bopd due by November 2020.
Assuming the first two conditions are met (the increase of production rates and recovery factors, and the egress constraint is no longer relevant) the profitability of the project at the basin roll-up level must be tested with a reserves model with inputs such as production rates by block, operating and capital expenditures for the different reserves/production wedges, royalty rates and taxes. The model must be consistent with the development program proposed by the operators in the region and be run at different pricing scenarios to stress-test the break-even value at several levels.