CALGARY, Alberta – There is no question that geology is a subjective science that is open to interpretation. But every now and again, a geology professional takes liberties with this interpretation that can end up being very costly. This article reports a case to that very point.
Luke Jennings, Senior Geologist with Upstock Energy, presented an exploration strategy/proposal to senior executives that included a geological summary with a series of correlations on a poro-perm plot. The following quote is an excerpt from his presentation:
Only Amerada well 14/9-1 tested this play within closure on the crest of the Intra-Graben High. The Tithonian to Berriasian, late syn-rift unit had log-derived porosities up to 30%.
Although permeabilities appear to be poor at the 14/9-1 well location, the prospectivity of the syn-rift succession cannot be ruled out elsewhere, especially where early good poro-perm characteristics have been maintained by early oil migration before the destructive process of later paleo-microbial diagenesis. I was able to find a strong best fit correlation on the poro-perm plot as shown in Figure 1:
After a number of hours of continued analysis and breaking down the poro-perm plot, Mr. Jennings was able to find a 2nd best fit correlation through the same data, as shown in Figure 2. Mr. Jennings continues,
It is very clear that the 2 best fit trends are not singing the same tune. Figure 1 indicates that the permeability increases strongly with porosity, yet the 2nd best fit depicted in Figure 2 suggests that permeability decreases slighly with increasing porosity. But I am a geologist, and the work I do does not really need to make any friggin’ sense.
So in conclusion, having seen the effects of glacial ice and modern processes on Mount Desert Island, our geological overview of the region is now complete. A company endorsed field excursion to the Mount Desert Island region filled us with insight and a new perspective on the play. The geologic history of Mount Desert Island is a long one; rocks over 500 million years old present evidence for the island’s beginnings on the bottom of an ancient ocean floor, and then they were moved as rocks were back then, and subsequently altered by a process.
Over millions of years, that somehow translates into a stratigraphical trap containing 180 MMbbl of oil in place. Armed with this definitive knowledge, I am therefore asking for $25MM for a 10 well drilling program for the 2014 Capital Year.
Mr. Jennings’ request was denied by management in short order, his position subsequently became redundant, and he was laid off.