Latin America Has Huge Potential for Unconventionals – CERA Week 2012
Foreign energy leaders touted their countries’ potential for unconventional oil and gas production at the CERA Week 2012 energy convention in downtown Houston Tuesday, hoping to follow the United States’ boom in developing shale gas and tight oil resources.
Officials from Colombia, Argentina and other energy-rich nations said the next generation of fossil fuel development in their countries is critical to expanding employment opportunities and revenues for the developing nations.
However, limitations in infrastructure, equipment and technology remain challenges to developing frontier sources of crude and natural gas from oil sands and shale, leaders said.
“Latin America has huge potential for unconventionals,” said Enrique Valesquez, vice president of exploration for Colombia’s state petroleum company, Ecopetrol.
Valesquez said the company is actively working to tap into those resources, with a goal to produce 50,000 barrels of oil equivalent from unconventional sources by 2020.
The nation is within weeks of reaching production of 1 million barrels of oil equivalent per day, doubling its production over five years, said Mauricio Cardenas, Colombia minister of mines and energy. Colombian leaders hope to grow production another 50 percent to 1.5 million barrels by 2020.
“The challenge for Ecopetrol is tremendous,” Valesquez said, noting that the company must heed strict environmental concerns and restrictions on using and disposing of water.
He compared operations in Colombia to those he witnessed in recent trip to Texas.
Source: Fuel Fix