Editorial: Accounting for reserves

Slowly but surely, methods of publicly disclosing oil and gas reserves are improving. That’s how they should improve: slowly but surely.This week’s special report, Corporate Reserves Issues, beginning on p. 20, describes the issues and progress so far. The complexity and the difficulty are apparent. They’re the reasons not to rush improvement.Reserves reporting must navigate a treacherous channel between the often-conflicting ideals of certitude and full disclosure. In the US, current requirements, enforced by the Securities and Exchange Commission, call for estimates of proved reserves and of values calculated on the basis of projected production and prices, discounted ...

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