Montney marketables put at 449 tcf, 15.5 billion bbl

The Montney formation in British Columbia and Alberta is one of the world’s largest hydrocarbon resources that could meet Canada’s natural gas needs for 145 years at present consumption rates, the National Energy Board said Nov. 6.

The formation also contains more than 15.5 billion bbl of marketable natural gas liquids and crude oil, said NEB, the British Columbia Oil & Gas Commission, the Alberta Energy Regulator, and the British Columbia Ministry of Natural Gas Development in releasing the first estimate of the formation’s marketable unconventional petroleum resources.

Recent advances in technology, such as multistage hydraulic fracturing, have made it possible to economically develop unconventional gas and liquids in the Montney for the past few years, but little had been known about its total potential.

The agencies estimate that the Montney contains 449 tcf of marketable natural gas, 14.5 billion bbl of marketable natural gas liquids, and 1.125 million bbl of marketable oil.

By combining the Montney’s marketable gas estimate with prior assessments, the total ultimate potential remaining in western Canada is 632 tcf. This estimate is likely to increase as additional unconventional potential from other formations is estimated, NEB predicted.

The Montney formation lies roughly in Northeast British Columbia, south of Fort Nelson, and spread into northwest Alberta past Grande Prairie.

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