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Ben D. Hare1
(1) Vastar Resources, Inc, Houston, TX

Abstract: Supply and Demand, Reserves and Resources: 21st Century Energy Issues

As the new century begins, there is considerable debate about ultimate hydrocarbon resources, reserves sustainability, and energy supply and demand issues. The debate in the U.S. centers on gas supply in the 2010-2020 time period, especially if the U.S. adopts the Kyoto Protocols - agreements that would substantially increase gas demand for electric power generation. Industry groups and government agencies have generated estimates of reserves and undiscovered resources for the U.S. and worldwide. All of these issues have impact on the AAPG membership.

Understanding the terminology of this debate is important for successful communication. Supply is the quantity of hydrocarbons available to be produced from existing wells in a given period of time. Demand is the amount of hydrocarbons called to meet the country's energy needs. Reserves are the estimated amount of hydrocarbons that can eventually be recovered from existing reservoirs and fields under current technology and pricing conditions. Resources are the estimated amount of hydrocarbons that remain to be discovered or developed based upon geological knowledge, exploration and development technologies and economic changes in the marketplace. Resources have to be converted to reserves for supply and demand to be in balance.

Recognizing the importance of these issues to the membership, the AAPG Executive Committee in 1993 chartered the Committee on Resource Evaluation (CORE) "to provide input and facilitate U.S. government agencies in performing assessments of U.S. hydrocarbon resources." In 1999, CORE began an evaluation of the upstream assumptions used by the Energy Information Administration's analysis of the economic impacts of the Kyoto Protocol on U.S. energy markets. The following papers in this session address these topics, and provide a framework for understanding 21st century resources.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90914©2000 AAPG Annual Convention, New Orleans, Louisiana