Bergen, Norway 11 – 13 June, 2019

The lower tertiary in the Gulf of Mexico offers great potential

The good times are behind us, but also ahead. Keynote speaker at Underwater Technology Conference, Steve Thurston, is optimistic about the future.

– The Gulf of Mexico Lower Tertiary Trend continues to deliver new significant discoveries, with potentially 5 Billion BOE recoverable reserves discovered to date, says Steve Thurston, which is Chevron’s Vice President of Deep-water Exploration and Projects.

The theme for his presentation is “Developing & Deploying New Technologies that Enable New Developments in the Deepwater Gulf of Mexico”.
– The first production from the Lower Tertiary Trend was achieved in 2010, and there are more Lower Tertiary fields planed for start-up in the next 3 years. Technical advances in exploration, drilling and subsea equipment will help maintain this trend as an attractive E&P investment, says Thurston.

Not possible 13 years ago
“Facing new realities” in the Gulf of Mexico requires,  according to Thurston, overcoming the natural challenges of exploration and production in deeper water in a geologically complex basin.
– Chevron has continued to advance deepwater enabling technologies with collaborative partnerships focused on technologies from the top to the bottom of the production path. We are making significant advancements in  what we call our “Big Seven” areas of focus that will help overcome our deepwater challenges, namely – Seismic Imaging, Drilling Efficiency, Completion Quality,  Seafloor Boosting, In-Well
Artificial Lift, Optimized Waterflood and Enhanced Oil Recovery, says Thurston.  He points out that a look back on their current Gulf of Mexico deepwater portfolio (seven fields producing & four fields in development) shows that all their fields were enabled with some type of new technology.
– None of these projects were possible 13 years ago, and it has been operators like Chevron and the deepwater industry that have partnered  together to develop and deploy the technical solutions required to bring these challenging projects safely online, he says.

Collaboration are essential
He thinks that some of the most crucial actions to maintain a strong and competitive subsea industry in the future are to continue to make a dvancements in new technologies through cooperative partnerships.
– Key technology projects focused on the sub-salt Miocene and Lower Tertiary trends will enhance reservoir recovery, improve reservoir flow rates, reduce cost, and improve safety and reliability, he says.
Another area of importance is increased collaboration between competitors and standardisation.
– Standardization in core subsea equipment will increase efficiency, reduce costs, and improve project execution. Long term partnerships and collaboration are essential for developing new technologies and driving standardization, Thurston says.

Steve Thurston will give his key note address at UTC 18 June