Abstract

Oil exploration and production business decisions need accurate forecasts derived from a description of the subsurface combined with a statement of the uncertainty associated with that description. However, we commonly observe biases in the quantification of uncertainty due to cultural influence and overconfidence in our ability to estimate uncertainty, leading to disappointment when reality lies outside predictions. In tandem, a lack of insight into the value that uncertainty holds on the business case can lead to a mismatch between the effort expended on deriving a single “best” guess versus that on understanding the uncertainty range associated with that guess. Generating stochastic results around a “best technical case” can give a seemingly plausible range of uncertainty but typically fails to explore the uncertainty space.

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