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Assessing Gas and Oil Resources in the Intermountain West by Tom Latourette

By Tom Latourette

This document lays the basis for deciding on the fuel and oil assets which are realistically to be had while exploration and construction expenditures, infrastructure and transporation expenditures, and enviromental affects are thought of.

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S. Geological Survey concluded that costs associated with reserve appreciation could not be estimated, because past and projected future growth could not be related to specific development efforts. S. Geological Survey includes reserve appreciation projected for 1994 through 2015 to the economically recoverable resource (in contrast, the technically recoverable assessment includes reserve appreciation through 2071). The Hydrocarbon Supply Model, on the other hand, assesses the economic recoverability of resources available through reserve appreciation by estimating the number of wells required to explore and develop those resources.

Including this element is important for assessing the viable resource in the Rocky Mountains, however. Compared to other parts of the country, the Rocky Mountain Region is generally farther from consumer markets, and has considerably less road, pipeline, and processing infrastructure. In addition, because of the remoteness of the area and the rugged terrain, construction, operation, and maintenance of infrastructure is technically challenging and more costly than in many other parts of the country.

5 tcf in 1985). 7—Historical Gas Resource Estimates 1995 2000 21 included in resource assessments, and the amount assessed is rapidly being revised upward as experience grows. 22 3. Legal Access To Resources in the Intermountain West Much of the current debate over resource development in the Intermountain West stems from restrictions on federal land use and their implications for accessing gas and oil resources. While interest in access restrictions has existed for some time, recent efforts to evaluate these restrictions and their impact have been spurred largely by the Energy Policy and Conservation Act of 2000, which directs federal land management agencies to assess the energy potential of public lands and identify impediments to its development.

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