Dutton, Shirley P.1, Eugene M. Kim1, Caroline L. Breton1,
Ronald F. Broadhead2, William D. Raatz2
(1) Bureau of Economic Geology, Austin, TX
(2) New Mexico Bureau of Geology and Mineral Resources, New Mexico Tech, Socorro, NM
ABSTRACT: Digital Play Portfolio of a Major U.S. Oil Province: The Permian Basin
The Permian Basin of west Texas and southeast New Mexico remains a significant
oil-producing province and contains an estimated 30 Bbbl of remaining mobile oil.
Increased use of enhanced-recovery practices in the Permian Basin can have a substantial
impact on U.S. oil production. A new digital play portfolio has been compiled for the
major oil reservoirs in the Permian Basin. More than 1,300 major reservoirs in the basin
had cumulative production greater than 1 MMbbl of oil through 2000; total production from
these reservoirs was 28.9 Bbbl. Thirty-two oil plays covering both the Texas and New
Mexico parts of the Permian Basin were defined, and each major reservoir has been assigned
to a play and mapped in a Geographic Information System (GIS). The portfolio includes a
summary description of each play, including key reservoir characteristics and successful
reservoir development methods. Enhanced-recovery methods that have been demonstrated to
work well in one reservoir in a particular play should be applicable to analogous
reservoirs in that play.
The 1,040 major Permian Basin reservoirs in Texas have produced 24.4 Bbbl of oil. The Texas reservoirs have been grouped into 27 oil plays, the largest being the Northern Shelf San Andres Platform Carbonate, the Leonardian Restricted Platform Carbonate, and the Pennsylvanian and Lower Permian Horseshoe Atoll Carbonate. Carbonate reservoirs have produced 19.7 Bbbl of oil, clastics 4.0 Bbbl, and chert 0.8 Bbbl. The Permian System dominates production, accounting for 17.7 Bbbl, followed by the Pennsylvanian (3.4 Bbbl) and the Ordovician (1.7 Bbbl).
AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90026©2004 AAPG Annual Meeting, Dallas, Texas, April 18-21, 2004.