May 28, 2015: first assessment.
The first assessment of the unconventional resource potential of two shales in the Canadian Northwest Territories has shown large amounts of petroleum resources. The assessment of the Bluefish and the Canol Shales, carried out jointly by The National Energy Board (NEB) and Northwest Territories Geological Survey (NTGS) assessed the resources at an impressive 191 billion barrels.
The assessment of the two shales, carried out jointly by The National Energy Board and Northwest Territories Geological Survey showed that the volume of oil-in-place for the Canol Shale is estimated to be 145 billion barrels; the thinner Bluefish Shale is expected to contain 46 billion barrels of oil-in-place.
The amount of recoverable oil was not estimated because well-test results are not yet publicly available and there is still uncertainty about whether the shales are capable of production. However, if only one percent of the in-place resource was recovered from the Canol Shale, it would represent a marketable resource of 1.45 billion barrels.So, it appears they are suggesting about 200 billion bbls OOIP with a recovery rate of 1% providing about 1.45 billion bbls. To put that in perspective, most "everyone" agrees that the Williston Basin Bakken boasts 500 billion bbls OOIP and operators are currently easily getting 3% recovery, and maybe much more. Of course, the official surveys (USGS) do not agree with 500 billion bbls OOIP in the Williston Basin, so it's possible that the Canol Shale / Bluefish Shale is similar in size to the Williston Bakken.
June 3, 2014: update. Includes notes on the Bluefish in the same play.
February 5, 2013: MGM Energy spuds exploratory well in the Canol.
The emerging Canol oil shale is poised to challenge the Bakken and Eagle Ford plays as one of North America's largest oil shale deposits when the super majors unveil their significant positions this winter. The Canol is a high quality shale reservoir which covers a larger area than the Eagle Ford and has better reservoir parameters than either of its southern rivals. This oil play in Canada's North West Territories (NWT) offers risk tolerant investors the possibility of a high impact investment opportunity which has not shown up on investors' radar screens because the majors who control the play are not as prone to self promotion as junior and mid-sized companies. As a result, the potential value of the play may not be reflected in their stock prices.Today, the update:
This play potentially exceeds the Bakken and Eagle Ford, but is unusual in that it is controlled by the major oil companies with only one small company involved. Very little information has been released to base an evaluation upon as companies were competing to accumulate land positions. That is about to change, as the play is now in the de-risking stage of development with five wells presently being drilled and/or tested.