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This bulletin provides information on the completion of the Energy Resources Conservation Board’s (ERCB’s) Alberta Royalty Framework (ARF) project and describes key elements of the guidelines used by the ERCB to determine acid gas content (AGC) values and the associated change request process.
The ERCB’s ARF project was initiated to develop and introduce new processes and enhance ERCB computer systems to support the successful implementation of the Alberta Department of Energy’s (DOE’s) ARF initiative. The ERCB’s ARF project has produced the following deliverables, which will be complete and operational by December 15, 2009:
In support of the ARF initiative, the ERCB has implemented changes to calculate and disseminate AGC data to the DOE for royalty calculation purposes.
The AGC value is the sum of the hydrogen sulphide (H2S) and carbon dioxide (CO2) content (mole fraction) of raw gas being produced in a well event. The ERCB is responsible for providing AGC data to the DOE via the PRA.
In general, all wells in a geological pool are assumed to have the same gas composition. Each geological pool is assigned an AGC value based on an average of gas analyses for well events in the pool. This single pool AGC average is assigned to all well events in the pool. Note that assigning a single pool AGC average is not applicable to coalbed methane (CBM) pools because their gas composition varies over time and from well to well. Instead, the AGC value for a CBM well event is based on gas analysis for that particular well event. CBM wells do not produce H2S. The AGC for a CBM well is based solely on the CO2 production from the well.
When a well event produces from commingled pools, its AGC value is calculated as the average of the AGC values of the contributing pools. The assumption is that within that well event, all pools contribute equally to the production. This only applies to the commingling of conventional pools.
The ERCB reminds industry that a gas analysis is required for each gas well completed outside an existing pool order. It also recognizes that the gas analysis data set is not complete for the province. Therefore,
For additional information regarding the process for determining pool average AGC values, please contact the ERCB by sending an e-mail to Inquiries@ercb.ca with the subject line: Acid Gas Content Change Request.
Each set of AGC data is accompanied by a start date and an end date. These dates specify the period during which a particular set of AGC data is to be applied. The following guidelines are used for setting dates based on the method of gas production.
Conventional oil and gas pools and enhanced recovery pools: The AGC values for conventional pools are assumed to be constant over the life of the pool. The AGC values for enhanced recovery pools are based only on gas analyses that are representative of the original reservoir fluid. As new data are submitted, the ERCB will be able to refine its estimates of pool AGC values.
CBM wells: The CO2 content of wells producing CBM or a combination of CBM and conventional gas may increase over the production life of the well. As such, AGC values are assigned to CBM well events only when a gas analysis is provided for a specific well event and upon successful request for a change in AGC.
When submitting a request for a change to the AGC value(s) of well events maintained by the ERCB, the requester should be aware of the following:
An AGC change request should be sent by e-mail to the ERCB Customer Contact Centre at Inquiries@ercb.ca, with the subject line: Acid Gas Content Change Request. The submission must include the following information:
Additionally, one or more of the following may be submitted to support the change request assessment process:
The ERCB will process AGC change requests in the order in which they are received. Under normal circumstances, a request that has reached the front of the queue will be processed by the ERCB within 10 business days, assuming there are no deficiencies. Approved requests may take up to 6 weeks to reach the PRA system, as AGCs are transferred to the PRA on a monthly basis.
Once the request has been reviewed, the ERCB will issue a response indicating whether the request has been approved. If the request is denied, a reason will be given. Further requests to reexamine or reassess a change request decision must be accompanied with new or previously unavailable supporting information.
If the request results in a change to the AGC value for a pool containing multiple wells, only the originator of the change request will be notified by the ERCB. However, operators and licensees of wells in the same pool will have the ability to view the revised AGC value when it becomes available on the PRA system.
The status of a submitted change request will not be posted by the ERCB. However, the requester may inquire about the change request status by sending an e-mail to Inquiries@ercb.ca with the same subject line: Acid Gas Content Change Request. This e-mail must contain sufficient detail to enable the ERCB to identify the specific change request and confirm its status.
Note that inquiries related to DOE’s ARF must be directed to DOE via its website http://www.energy.gov.ab.ca.
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