Why do giant fields matter? As the ultimate exploration prize, giant oil and gas fields represent major economic events that preview many positive outcomes – particularly the flow of capital and revenue into the host country and decades of collateral economic activity from oil and gas production. For developing countries, a giant field’s net present value might exceed their current GDP. Giant fields bring prosperity both locally and globally.
In 15 chapters across 455 pages, AAPG Memoir 125: “Giant Fields of the Decade: 2010-2020” is a masterpiece that describes fields with 500 million or more barrels of recoverable oil that have been found in the past decade. It examines and explains the habitat of giant oil and gas fields, exploration trends, the economic effects of giant fields, paradigm shifts in giants, and adding new reserves and production.
It focuses on 11 key giants:
- Wattenberg Field of the Denver Basin, United States
- West Texas (Permian) super basin, United States
- Vaca Muerta play, Argentina
- Johan Castberg, Barents Sea
- Zafarani and Tangawizi, offshore Tanzania
- Tortue/ Ahmeyim fields, offshore Mauritania and Senegal
- Pikka Field, Nanushuk Play of North Slope, Alaska
- Mexico Area 1, Sureste Basin
- Zama Discovery, offshore Tabasco, Mexico
- Zohr, Nile Delta
- Liza, offshore Guyana
From onshore to offshore, conventional to unconventional, source rock to tight rock, structural to stratigraphic trap and terrestrial to deepwater, this book covers the scope and differences of giant fields. This broad coverage will educate even the most seasoned and well-rounded professional.
How are the Giants Found?
How do explorers go about finding the next giant field? Giant fields are not random. As this book uniquely describes, nearly 1,200 giant fields exist, yet 60 percent of the giants are in 5 percent of the sedimentary basins worldwide. These basins are known as “super basins.” There are 23 onshore and eight offshore. As an explorer, the fastest way to “30 years more experience” is immersion in analogs, which this book provides.
It was edited by Charles A. Sternbach, Robert K. Merrill and John C. Dolson. Professionals, academics and students will benefit from the decades of learnings resulting from the successes and failures on the pathway to discovering these giant fields. For those involved in oil and gas exploration, this history serves as an essential reference to apply in their quest to discover new giants. For professionals specifically working in producing fields, this book demonstrates how giants can get bigger through the field growth phenomenon. Across the value chain, the energy industry will benefit from learning how giant fields impact global markets and economic development.
This book caused me to think critically about exploration dogma. The chapters highlight the paradigm changes in exploration, improvements in state-of-the-art technology and understanding of world-class petroleum accumulations. New paradigm shifts ushering in a wave of discoveries include a huge jump in stratigraphic play success, ultra-deep drilling to 5-9 kilometers below mudline, and the discovery of giant fields on oceanic crust or greatly thinned continental crust.
There have been 82 such giants found in the last decade. They added a whopping 53 percent of all new field resources over that time. How many giants will explorers find in this decade?
For more information on this landmark contribution to the energy industry, visit store.aapg.org.