The Horn River play is one of the latest grand resource plays to emerge in the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin. Following in the footsteps of such shale gas plays as the Barnett, Antrim and Caney Shale, the Horn River discovery lead to a surge in land sales in remote north-eastern British Columbia. Mineral rights for more than a million acres were secured by oil and gas companies in the last few years.
While the presence of natural gas in this stratigraphical unit was known for decades, it took recent technological advances to make this play economical, allowing operators to extract hydrocarbons from the shale. Horizontal drilling allows boreholes to open up more reservoir; multi well pad drilling minimizes the environmental impact; invert mud keeps open holes under control. Multi-stage fracturing, a process that cracks up the rock by shooting high pressure water and sand into the formation, opens new permeable conduits in the otherwise tight formation. The thickness of the shale stack makes this an ideal candidate for multi-stage fracturing.
Large quantities of natural gas are present in various horizons of the Horn River Formation. Commercial quantities of gas can be extracted from the Muskwa shale, Otterpark Member or Evie Member. Natural gas reserve estimates vary from 100 to 600 trillion cubic feet, twice to ten times higher than reserves of the Montney Play, which is successfully drilled south of the Horn River Basin. Ten to twenty percent of the gas can be recovered with current technology.
Chinook Consulting assists oil and gas companies with field and office geological supervision of operations pertaining to all areas of the Horn River Basin. Several of our wellsite geologists are specialized in this particular play. Well positioned since the discovery of this play, our company amassed solid expertise and detailed knowledge related to the challenging geology and complex drilling process of the Horn River Shale.