From the linked article:
The increases from 4% to 6% to 8% in recovery factors has all related to what will be recovered through primary development. The message that I see through this industry is that secondary recovery such as natural gas injection or waterflooding will be the really big prize.
Petrobakken which is a company that I follow very closely is already well into a natural gas injection secondary recovery project on its Bakken property in Saskatchewan. Petrobakken (and its main competitor Crescent Point Energy) both believe that secondary recovery will almost double the amount of oil recoverable.
The beautiful thing about the boost in recoveries that will come from secondary recovery efforts are the economics involved. For secondary recovery there is no additional land cost and a huge percentage of the infrastructure is already in place from primary recovery efforts.
A barrel of oil produced through primary or secondary recovery techniques will both sell for the same price in the market. The cost of producing that barrel using secondary recovery might cost half of what producing a primary barrel did.For newbies, when the Bakken boom was first beginning, "experts" talked of 1 - 3% recovery of original oil in place (OOIP) but it was obvious from initial reports that operators were easily getting 4% and MillionDollarWay posted early that 8% recovery was being seen and/or being reported (directly or indirectly) by some operators.
8% of 500 billion bbls OOIP = 40 billion bbls.
8% of one trillion bbls of OOIP = 80 billion bbls.