Anadarko’s Bossier Gas Play: A Sleeping Giant in a Mature Basin
James J. Emme, Robert W. Stancil, 2005. "Anadarko’s Bossier Gas Play: A Sleeping Giant in a Mature Basin", Discoverers of the 20th Century: Perfecting the Search, Charles A. Sternbach, Marlan W. Downey, Gerald M. Friedman
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The Bossier Sand Play in the “mature” East Texas basin has emerged as one of the premier basin-center gas plays in the onshore U.S. For almost 25 years, the Jurassic Bossier Sands were viewed as “bail out” zones in wells drilled for deeper targets in the Hay-nesville/Cotton Valley and Smackover Limestones. Prior to 1995, the average Bossier completion at 11,500 ft (3505 m) produced about 0.9 bcf of gas and was considered uneconomic as a primary objective. In 1996, following a failed Cotton Valley Limestone exploration program, Anadarko recognized the ingredients for significant gas reserves in the Bossier Sands. Favorable geologic conditions included a petroleum system with juxtaposed reservoir, source, and seal over a broad, overpressured region. Economic hurdles included high drilling and completion costs for relatively low-rate gas production in “permeability-challenged” sandstones. Successive operational/cost improvements led to economically attractive results, even in a $2/mcf gas price environment. Average Bossier wells now take 55 days from spud to first sales with initial rates of 3-5 mmcfd gas/day and reserves of 2.4-3 bcf of gas. Exceptional wells produce up to 50 mmcf gas/day with 10 bcf of gas reserves. As of August 2001, Anadarko’s East Texas Bossier production was in excess of 300 mmcf gas/day with proven reserves for the Dew/Mimms Creek Field of over 1.1 tcf of gas (“giant field" status). Ultimately, the Bossier Gas Play is expected to yield multi-tcf reserves from developing trends throughout East Texas and north Louisiana. Anadarko’s Bossier success can be tied to these key factors: 1) recognition of the resource potential, 2) improvements in drilling/completion costs and techniques, 3) large acreage position, and 4) integration of midstream/marketing strategies. North American onshore basins have many more “sleeping giants” yet to be awakened by innovative explorers who recognize their potential!