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SPE 112924

Identification of Wells with High CO2-Leakage Potential in Mature Oil Fields
Developed for CO2-Enhanced Oil Recovery
T.L. Watson, SPE, T.L. Watson & Associates Inc.; S. Bachu, Alberta Energy Resource Conservation Board
Copyright 2008, Society of Petroleum Engineers
This paper was prepared for presentation at the 2008 SPE/DOE Improved Oil Recovery Symposium held in Tulsa, Oklahoma, U.S.A., 19–23 April 2008.
This paper was selected for presentation by an SPE program committee following review of information contained in an abstract submitted by the author(s). Contents of the paper have not been
reviewed by the Society of Petroleum Engineers and are subject to correction by the author(s). The material does not necessarily reflect any position of the Society of Petroleum Engineers, its
officers, or members. Electronic reproduction, distribution, or storage of any part of this paper without the written consent of the Society of Petroleum Engineers is prohibited. Permission to
reproduce in print is restricted to an abstract of not more than 300 words; illustrations may not be copied. The abstract must contain conspicuous acknowledgment of SPE copyright.

Abstract
Previous work, presented in SPE 106817, “Evaluation of the Potential for Gas and CO2 Leakage along Wellbores”, described
a method to predict the potential for wellbore leakage which primarily occurs in the shallow areas of a wellbore.
The work presented here focuses on the potential for leakage to occur from the deep regions of a wellbore, particularly
from viable oil reservoirs. The potential for wellbore leakage where CO2 emhanced oil recovery (EOR) or sequestration is or
may be conducted is specifically investigated.
The Alberta Energy Resources Conservation Board collects and maintains data regarding cement types used in primary
cementing of casing strings, stimulation information and abandonment data. These data were used to determine the potential
for deep wellbore leakage in the presence of CO2. This deep wellbore leakage potential is then coupled with shallow wellbore
leakage potential to predict which wells may leak to other reservoirs, potable groundwater aquifers or to the atmosphere in a
CO2 sequestration or EOR project.
Cements with additives such as bentonite have been shown to be particularly susceptible to CO2 attack. Wells were
screened for cement blends placed in the deeper sections of the wellbore during primary cementing. This information is
useful in predicting if a wellbore will remain leak free if CO2 is placed in the reservoir and the wellbore is contacted.
The stimulation method was evaluated to determine if injected CO2 may break through to existing wellbores prior to full
reservoir sweep, thus decreasing the time that the wellbore could remain leak free. Stimulations such as hydraulic fracture,
perforating and acidizing with pressure were deemed to increase the likelihood that wellbores would leak due to cement
sheath cracking coupled with CO2 attack of cement and casing.
The abandonment method was also evaluated. In Alberta the primary form of zonal abandonment utilizes a mechanical
bridge plug capped with cement. The bridge plug material is expected to fail in the presence of CO2 due to CO2 attack on
elastomers and cast iron.
Two large field evaluations are presented as case studies.
Figure 1: Shallow and deep
Introduction
Several client studies have been conducted to date in Alberta, Canada, to determine factors which
may affect wellbore leakage. The findings of these studies were presented previously (Bachu and
Watson, 2006; Watson and Bachu, 2007). These papers, particularly SPE 106817, presented an
analysis of the factors that affect the leakage potential in the shallow part of a well, and a
decision-tree type model which enables ranking of a well’s potential to leak based on factors
determined in the client studies.
The original ranking system generally focused on leaks from the shallower regions of the well
(Figure 1). These leaks typically manifest themselves at surface as annular pressure (surface
casing vent flow-SCVF, known also as sustained casing pressure) or soil gas migration. This
ranking system did not take into account the potential for a native or injected fluid or gas to
create or increase the potential for a well to leak.
In Alberta several reservoirs are currently being evaluated for CO2 enhanced oil recovery
(EOR), while more than 30 depleted oil and gas reservoirs and deep saline aquifers are used for
acid gas (CO2 and H2S) disposal. In an attempt to determine the potential for a well penetrating
one of these reservoirs or aquifers to leak CO2 or acid gas from the target reservoir, a computerbased tool was developed. This tool uses the data available in electronic form from the Alberta

areas of the wellbore.

2007).5 2 1. Table 3: Deep leakage factors. 1986. 1984. Krilov et al. Deep Wellbore Leakage Three factors were used to evaluate the Deep Leakage Potential (DLP) for a wellbore in CO2 sequestration.2 1. Deep leakage was evaluated based on the presence of CO2 or acid gas and the impact this acidic environment would have on wellbore construction and abandonment materials such as cement. Table 1 indicates these factors..2 SPE 112924 Energy Resources Conservation Board (ERCB) to create a score for each wellbore. These values are then multiplied to determine a well’s Shallow Leakage Potential (SLP) score. 2006a). These studies also suggest that the inclusion of additives. 2006. Factor Criterion Spud Date Abandonment Date Surface Casing Size Well Type Geographic Location 1965-1990 <1995 ≥244. The shallow leakage factors have been determined by analysing known leakage in the field and determining the most prevalent factors that lead to annular pressure and soil gas migration (Bachu and Watson. Factor Criterion Fracture Fracture Acid Acid Acid Perforations Abandonment type Abandonment type count =1 count >1 count=1 count=2 count>2 count>1 Bridge Plug Not abandoned Meets Criterion Value 1. Recent laboratory work suggests. Watson and Bachu. Most of these studies indicate that cement will not withstand CO2 attack and will fail to provide a seal in the casing/hole annulus when CO2 is introduced (Nelson and Guillot. Watson and Bachu. that cements with low free water ratios may not be as susceptible to CO2 attack due to the formation of an impermeable barrier on the cement sheath that halts further deterioration as shown in Figures 2 and 3 (Kutchko et al. This score indicates the leakage potential from both the shallow and deep regions of the wellbore as depicted in Figure 1. however. 2000. 2007). 2007) were assigned values which reflected the influence that a particular factor has on shallow wellbore leakage. steel and elastomers.2-1. Table 1: Shallow leakage factors.. such as bentonite. These factors are then multiplied to obtain the well’s overall DLP.5 Shallow Leak Potential (SLP) Low Medium High Extreme Score <50 50-200 200-400 >400 1 1 1 1 1 1 In general the analysis is based on the potential for a well to have a leakage pathway along the wellbore and does not depend on the fluid or gas source that may be leaking.5 8 3 Default Value 1 1 1 1 1 1. Shallow Leakage Factors previously determined to have an effect on shallow wellbore leakage (Bachu and Watson. Kutchko et al.5 mm Cased Special Test Area >2500 m 1. Bruckdorfer. Table 2 summarizes scores into general leakage-potential categories.5 2 3 2 Default Value 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 Deep Leak Potential (DLP) Low Medium High Extreme Score <2 2-6 6-10 >10 Cement Type Several studies have been conducted to determine the effect of CO2 on the quality of cements used in wellbore construction (Browning. The deep leakage factors. Data were also compiled to allow for the future evaluation of possible consequences of a leaking wellbore.. 1984.5 5 4 2 1.. have been determined from theoretical deduction and laboratory results. criteria and assigned values used to determine the possibility that deep leakage would occur. Table 3 indicates the factors. which increase the free water ratio.8 No Unknown No Unknown Well Total Depth Well Deviation Cement to Surface Cement to Surface Additional Plug Additional Plug Table 2: Shallow leak potential. increases the potential for .1 1. 2007a). Onan. acid gas disposal and CO2-EOR.5 1. Table 4 summarizes the product score values into general categories. Duguid et al. Table 4: Deep leak potential. 2004. however. the criteria and default values assigned based on these criteria. Meets Criterion Value 3 5 1. 2006.

Cement Type 1:1 POZ MIX Assigned Value 1 Description 3 Cement. Kutchko. Inert additives such as fly ash. The CaCO3(s) is forming a barrier to further CO2 infiltration (Kutchko et al. decrease the cement density and decrease the fluid loss (Nelson and Guillot. 2007a). Since no such studies exist for the effect of acid gas on well cements. (Kutchko et al. The addition of bentonite increases the set cement porosity. Filler type cements are often run in the shallower areas of the wellbore. silicate (sand) and nitrogen (foamed cement) do not increase the free water ratio and are assumed for this study to have a lesser effect on the deterioration of cement in the presence of CO2 (Nelson and Guillot.. Table 5: Cement types and values. The data. such as gypsum. Figure 2: Kinetic results for the penetration rate of CO2 -saturated brine of the cement.SPE 112924 3 cement break down in the presence of CO2 (Kutchko et al. commonly referred to as gel. The ERCB data indicate these different cement types in a wellbore. 2007a). Department of Energy).. which are highly acid-soluble. 2006a). is the most common additive to cement.. This additive is used as an extender to increase the yield of the cement. are also expected to deteriorate rapidly in the presence of CO2 or acid gas.S. several different types of cement may be used to cement the wellbore. Various neat cements Cement to fill annular packer. reduces cement porosity No cement SLURRY 6D 1 Unknown TAPERED CASING TH CEM/CEM FNDU UNCEM CSG/LINER 3 No cement 1 Thermal cement. U. Other additives. is run across the zone or completion interval. better quality cement. Table 5 itemizes the cement types found in the ERCB electronic database and the values assigned for the purpose of assessing a well’s potential to be adversely affected by CO2 or acid gas and potentially cause leakage. 2006a). not applicable Cement foamed with nitrogen Cement with various percent salt additive Cement with various percent silica sand additive Gypsum and gel additives SLOTTED LINER 3 Assumed gel additive to reduce density No cement. Generally. U. increasing the cement susceptibility to corrosion due to acidic formation fluids (Nelson and Guillot. Often. hole allowed to slough in on casing Blast furnace slag. (Photo courtesy of B. usually sand or silica additive No cement LIGHT WEIGHT 3 SELF STRESS 1 SLAG 3 . 2006b). designed for the well purpose. 2007a). (Graph courtesy of B. include information regarding the cement types used in the cementing of the production casing. provided by the ERCB. Kutchko. Department of Energy. it is assumed that the conclusions and results for CO2 would apply to acid gas as well since the reactions are due to the acidic nature of the fluid (Kutchko et al. temperature and reservoir conditions..) Bentonite.S. 2007b). Cement blends which include bentonite are often used as “filler” cements to reduce the cost of cementing and the hydrostatic pressure applied to the producing formation or weak formations. depth. fly ash and various quantities of bentonite Unknown 1:1:# POZ BLACKGOLD 1 1 CAP (NEAT) CLASS X NEAT 1 1 FILL ECP 1 FOAMED 1 G + # PC SALT 1 G + # PC SAND GPSL/GPCEM/THX 3 3 Cement and fly ash Cap pumped on top of foam cement. as well as where they are placed by providing the sequence that the cement was Figure 3: SEM-BSE image of Class H neat cement cured for 28 days. not applicable.

Hydraulic fracturing breaks the reservoir rock using a viscous fluid. or chemical reactions. In comparison.. a mechanical bridge plug capped with 8 meters of cement (ERCB 2007). 2002). In this study hydraulic fracturing and acidizing with pressure were classified as stimulation methods that could have a negative impact on wellbore integrity. Cement squeeze with retainer to perforations. Energy Services). The reservoir rock is fractured and the fractures filled with a propping agent.. the localized reservoir pressure around these wells may facilitate the flow of flood fluids to migrate towards these low pressure areas. as well as the number of completed intervals in the wellbore. Multiple completions or perforated intervals provide a higher potential for cross flow between discrete geologic zones within the wellbore itself. usually sand. Cement data for wells spud prior to 1986 are sparse. Fracturing has been given a higher risk score due to higher treatment pressures and deeper penetration into the reservoir. As well. a cement squeeze through the perforations with or without a retainer. it is anticipated that CO2 or the acid gas may break through to these reservoir fractures preferentially.4 SPE 112924 pumped into the well. From this information it is possible to determine which cement type is in the deepest portions of the wellbore. Carbon dioxide or acid gas Figure 4: Cement sheath failure and may migrate through cracks in the cement created by stimulation or resulting cracks developed from pressure perforating. that creates a highly porous and permeable flow path to the wellbore. 2002). the most commonly used method. Acidizing dissolves wellbore scales. The cement type recorded as being at the bottom of the well is the cement type that this evaluation is based on. the higher the chance that casing. high pump rates and high pressures. These acidic fluids may increase and hasten the leakage by further cycling the internal casing (Watson et al. The number of completions is also counted and any well that has multiple completed intervals was assigned a higher value due to the increased potential of crossflow. Figure 5: Regulatory approved zonal abandonment methods in Alberta. These stimulations can remove near-wellbore damage caused by drilling activity and increase the flow potential near the wellbore. acidizing or if it had multiple completions. acidizing and perforating are usually near-wellbore treatments. The data were analysed to determine if a particular well was stimulated by fracturing. (Photo courtesy of Halliburton deteriorating the cement sheath or corroding the steel casing. Bridge plug capped with 8 meters of cement. The methods. Cement plug set across perforations. Both fracturing and acid treatments were counted for the individual wellbores. removes near wellbore damage and dissolves reservoir rock. Canada. Two types of treatments and perforating are anticipated to have potential effects on long term wellbore integrity due to excessive pressures (Watson et al. This count information is used based on the assumption that the more times a well is stimulated. Stimulation and Perforations The ERCB records information regarding most stimulation treatments to perforations or producing intervals in wellbores. Zonal Abandonment Method In Alberta the ERCB allows three options for zonal abandonment of cased wells. In the situation where CO2. acid gas and/or water is used for reservoir EOR. typically achieved by fracturing. 2007). however most wells spud after 1986 have detailed information regarding cement type and placement. bypassing unaltered reservoir rock due to the higher permeability of the fracture (Marsters. cement and/or cap rock systems may be damaged. . as shown in Figure 4. or. as depicted in Figure 5 are: a cement plug that extends a minimum of 15 meters above and below the perforated interval. where wells have been abandoned due to depletion or produced for long periods of time.

1975). These wells have been left out of the analysis since records in Alberta indicate that the leakage occurrence rate is 0. It is assumed. Wells that have not been cased are called drilled and abandoned. It is anticipated that the bridge plug abandonment method will have a shorter life than other methods due to mechanical failure. and these wells will therefore have a lower DLP. This corresponds to laboratory findings that indicate dump-bailing of cement may be ineffective in providing adequate seals (White et al. based on field knowledge. because it has a direct effect on the potential for wells to leak from the CO2 sequestration or acid gas disposal formation up the inside of the production casing where it may impact all horizons in the wellbore.6% 4. that cement plugs typically consist of neat type cements. The information provided by this analysis can be used to target particular wells for further evaluation based Figure 7: Map of Alberta. the ability of dump-bailed cement plugs to maintain an effective seal above the bridge plug is considered negligible for this study. 1975). Both iron and the typical nitrile elastomers used are subject to CO2 or acid gas attack that can lead to seal failure (Schremp and Roberson. 2006). showing the location of the Pembina and Zama Fields in red. Canada. Zonal abandonment type had originally been included in the potential for shallow wellbore leakage. Cement caps placed above bridge plugs are typically dumpFigure 6: Bridge plug capped with 8 meters of cement bailed into place. 1992). These fields are being considered for CO2 or acid-gas EOR.5% of drilled and abandoned wells compared to 13% of cased abandoned wells (Bachu and Watson.. Additionally. For this study the zonal abandonment method has been evaluated as deep potential for leakage.3% . acid gas and/or water.SPE 112924 5 This factor identifies the abandonment method for a particular well and assigns a value based on these criteria. on their individual DLP and SLP scores. The results of the evaluation can be used to determine the overall leakage potential for existing wells in oil fields where CO2 or acid gas injection may be used for EOR and/or future sequestration. change of reservoir pressure due to the injection of CO2. and pilots are currently being run in both. or a change in the gas/fluid chemistry below the bridge plug (Schremp and Roberson. Cement caps evaluated in an earlier client study with infiltrating CO2. ALBERTA Edmonton 3*3 5 *u 4"G 3 4 u D G 5 1 1u4 1 "3IG G 3 1 4 31 *5 u5 "3 43 4 "3 "*3 N O 3 I5 5 1 34 4 3 5 3 u3 u "5I4 3I5 14 3Š 5 1 4 "*"4 u Š 1 "u 4 3 G "3 Š Š 1 b Š 35 3 u5 5 4 "4 1 3 5 "4 u G 3 "3 4 ""E 4 3 33 u 5 u 1 5 u 4 3 4 b G *"5 3 D 5 *O *E *3 "5 35 45 "u *Š G "*1 I4 IG 1 G 4 u 3 5 u I33 b"E G 1 u G 5 5 5 4 u G u 3 b *u 5 "I3 5 4 4 4 *5u u Š O N 4 b u 4 u *4 u Š "b D "G D G Š *u Š *"u G 3 G 4 D 4 3 3 "u 4 O "4 G D I3 **4u G *L*"G u 3 O G "O "O 3 5 u 1 3 5 3 4 1 D IŠ 5 3 5 1 3 1 Š u b *5 *u 5 3 3 5 4 Š Š 45 3 D G 1 O G D "4 N 1 1 5 1 K 25 *Š 4 Š G 3 "G D "G 5 IN N 5 5 I1 "G 4 41 5u 3 1 3 4 E Š O *1 5 4 D *G 2 4 D u 3 G b 2 "*I4 G 5 O 4 u "Š L N *5 1 4 E 4 *5 u u G O 1 4 G u "Š 5 G *"3 u 5 3 2 1 4 **5 G u 5 1u 3 1 5 *1 u G Š 15 E D 2 ID 3 *5 "u 3 3 I5 O G I3 I**O 4 "3 3 3 u 5 u 3 4u 15 IO 3 *"b 4 *"5 u*b 4 G D I3 5 3 u 5 b 3 O 5 3 "E L 5 *N G "u D O *G 3 "5 Š "u G *u ""4 b 3*O Š 4 5 3 G *"L u 4 3 5 *G 3G 4 "5 u 5 u4 "u *3 ""Iu 44 3 G 1 G Š 5 *G 4 4 3 u "3 3 5 u *G I4 b Š G u *5 1 4 1 5 "N u 1 4 u Š O 5 IO O I5 L Š "Š 1 N D u Š 4 3N 4 4 3 L I5 D *D 13 5 G 1 5 "G 4 5 3 1"u I3 O u 4 3 u K 3 5 O N O 1 3 I"1 u 4 3 3 1 4 3 4 1 4 3 b "*N D 5 u"3 *"*5 u5 4 u 3 "I5 *IG u N 3 5 Š ""G *Š u 5 **u G G 5 N 44 5 5 "O 5 1 M G "N 1 3 E O 3 1 G *45 4 "L O *L 1 O 1 5 u E 1 5 u 3 u *3 4 3 4 *4L 5 u *54 E Š 5 "G Š I1 N K E O 3 u1 *G 3 Š 5 4 G 4 Š "5 G D 3 5 Š O 5 "G u 3 G Š 4 5 3 "G Š b1 IG G 4 *1 3 5 3 "G G *5 u 5 "u G O *"3 I1 IN b *5 ""u 5 3 4 4 u I3 L "G *"N u I4 E *Š 5 O N Š L5 3 "1 G *Ib *13 *I5 ID 5 u IŠ *Š 5 G u *4 3 4 u *4 3 1 Š 5 3 Iu *Iu 5 "O 2 u O N *3 G N 2 *u O u I5 O 5I D G E 14 b5 4 4 Š *5 4 "5 "5 4 4 3 4 31 u 13 u 44 u5 G D N O M 3 O D E 3 *5 5 N 53 1 D O u G **D 1 *Š 2 4 1 u 5 4 G 4 3 O 4 1G O IL "Š 4 D u *4G O N 3 3 5 5 3 4 *Ib G 3 41 5 I3 L 3 G *5 3 u N 4 Š 4 1 "N I*u *3 u "O 4 u G "I3 *E 4 5 3 "G O I*4 1D IŠ 5 *3 G L D 4 II"O u *3 G "G u I3 Š u 5 5 5 1 D 5 *G G IŠ 4 1 3 *D N 1 3 4 O D "Š 3 3 N 5 u u 1 D G u "4 *5 3 "1u u 4 O 1 3 "5 3 Š u u "*5 u 5 N G I*O G *E u G 3 5 1 1 *D O 4 "4 G L 4 IG 5 4 N 1 b IG *1 5 LG *O 4 3 1"3 *u ""*5 E O ID 5 5 *Š u L 4 G 3 L 4 *I"Š 1 G 4 4 G *4 D 3 "1 D *L 3 1 3 5 4 3 "5 IG 3 u O I"1 5 I"uG 4 O Š 5 5 5 "4 3 5 u *IŠ u 3 u 1 u 5 4 3 G Š 4 Š u 5 3 4 *"3 D u u D O G 54 O u Š "u 3 1 b "K 1 I5 b 3 u 5 3 4 1 5 L I35 14 u L*G N O IŠ 4 I3Š *5 u L"u 1 "1 5 u 41 5 5 G 4 *5 G 4 5 b Š O 1 3 4 4 "*O 4 I3 3 b 5 "5 O Š *G u 5 u *G 3 u **Š 1 5 3 u 4 1 5 *3 u I"4 u1 *3 3"*5 1 3 G Š 4 3 4 1 41 I4 *u"5 u3 1 G u5 35 3 4 u 3u G 3 3"*G 3 1 "D u 5 5 b1 u 4 u 1 bG N 4 1 "5 O 3E D 1 3 u 4 "5 4 u IG 5 1 D G 13 "u Š 4 4 1 u Š 4 3 u 14 Š 4 3 "u 5 3 u 4 4 u *"5 4 u b *3 3 u5 4 3 5 u 4 * * 5 * u 3 4 3 5 G 1 Š 1 4 3 1 Š u Š u 1 Š 5 * " 5 u 5 1 5 u 1 4 " 3 b 3 u 4 4 * " 3 4 4 u 4 u 5 Š 4 5 u 5 3 3 b 1 4 u 1 3 4 3 D 1 * G u 1 5 u * Š 3 1 u I 4 5 4 4 1uu 33 Š 4 u *3" 543 33 3 Pembina Field Calgary Pembina Zama Number of cased wells 9860 607 Number of wells drilled and abandoned 1050 106 % of wells with cement data 40% 64% % of wells with high DLP cement score 28% 20% % of wells fractured 75% 2% % of wells acidized 47% 80% % of wells abandoned 12% 13% % of wells with multiple completions 11% 55% % of wells with extreme DLP 14% 28% % of wells with extreme SLP 7% 18% % of wells with extreme SLP and DLP 1. 3 u4 3 u4 1 1 43 u 3 1 4 u u 34 43 b 1 u 3 34 5 3 "54 4 "5 5 1 "uu4 Š 3 u 3 Š u u "u 1 4 4 b "5 "3 u 5 *4 43 u "Š M "4 4 45 1Š 31 b4 5 1 3 13 *3 1 uu G 35 4 1 G G Š 4 1 IG 5 1 u 5 4 u 3 E b 4 Š 3 u u4 *3 *b E "b Š 13 u 1 5 G 1 *3 E "*3 3 5 u 3 b 3"5 *E 4 3 3 G Š 4 b 1 4 4 u1 5 u34u I**5 Š u4 O Š u 1 3 *3 G 1 4 5 1 *4 G 3 5 *G Š 4 *5 4 5 1 G K 4 G 5 "1 b 5 4 b 3 b u 4 b u "G 3 u E b 3 5 3 Š u u 5 34 1"E *5 4 5 1 *1 O G 5 Š "*3 4 1*5 "b 4 Š *4 3 5 4 5 G IŠ E 4 *1 b "u 4 Š u 3 4 5 1 1 u 5 3 G b "u3 1 3G 4b 5 *bu u *G Zama Field Table 4: Field data and results summary. Based on these findings. were found intact in only 50% of the wells investigated. Bridge plugs are typically made of cast iron and an elastomer sealing unit as shown in Figure 6. Table 4 provides general information for comparison between the two oil fields and the potential for well leakage based on the predetermined factors. no data exist to determine the cement type in the cement plugs used to abandon uncased wells. Case Studies The Pembina and Zama oil fields in Alberta (Figure 7) were evaluated using the previously described method.

SLP Score Figure 11: Location of Pembina wells with extreme SLP shown in red against all field wells in black. with 1. respectively. This information would be useful when determining the areas of an oil field that would be most desirable for CO2 EOR or sequestration.1% province wide. The distribution of wells. The base of groundwater protection varies between 200 and 600 m. by either DLP or SLP scores. 1995). The green grid indicates 6x6 miles/square. Individual factors. Wells that have been cased and completed are typically abandoned with a bridge plug set within 15 m of the perforated interval with 8 m of cement dump-bailed on top. ground water. Surface casing setting depth is at approximately 180 m. . 25 30+ 0 0 00 + 15 DLP Score 10 10 90 5 80 0 0 0 0 0 2000 70 200 3000 0 400 4000 0 600 Extreme 60 800 High 50 1000 Low Medium 0 1200 5000 40 1400 6000 0 Extreme 30 High 0 Low Medium 20 1600 10 Number of Wells with DLP Score 1800 Number of Wells with SLP Score Figure 8: Pembina Field DLP Score distribution. such as which wells are abandoned or have at risk cement types can also be analysed based on the nature of the proposed project.3% of Pembina wells reporting casing failure compared to 1. 1990). Generally. Figure 9: Pembina Field SLP Score distribution. The wells are generally vertical with single completions. respectively. for the Pembina Field is presented in Figures 8 and 9. and gives some indication of the potential economic impact of wellbore remediation prior to injection of CO2 at the scoping stage. Wells in the field typically are drilled to a depth of approximately 1600-1800 m. surface water or other potential leak receptors. The green grid indicates 6x6 miles/square. there are very few gas or oil bearing zones within the overlying horizons to leak to surface. This analysis gives an overall picture of the potential for well leakage and which area of the wellbores is most prone to leakage. 1000 20 Figure 10: Location of Pembina wells with extreme DLP shown in red against all field wells in black. Figures 10 and 11 indicate the geographic location of wells with extreme deep and shallow leakage potential in the Pembina Field. wells in the Pembina Field were stimulated by hydraulic fracturing and to a lesser extent by acidizing the completed interval. The well locations of a particular DLP or SLP score or range of score may be used to determine potential consequences by overlaying population density. the primary cementing requirements have been 100 m above the Cardium Formation at 1400 m or the overlying Belly River Formation at an average depth of about 800 m (ERCB. was discovered in the early 1950’s with drilling continuing on until today. The wells are generally completed and produced from the Cardium Formation which is a sandstone with an overlaying conglomerate and a thick shale caprock. the largest oil field in Canada. with typical Base of Ground Water Protection (BGWP) at 470 m (Alberta Environment.6 SPE 112924 Pembina Field Wellbore Leakage Potential The Pembina Field. External casing corrosion does not seem to be problematic in the area. In recent years some uphole potential has been realized. Although there are wells with potentially 1200 m of uncemented casing in the Pembina Field. Historically.

1995). The deep leakage analysis also indicates that fracture stimulation may create leakage pathways in the deep regions of the wellbore and that fracture stimulation is the main factor in DLP for the Pembina Field. With only 12% of cased wells currently abandoned in the Pembina Field. with the average BGWP at 250 m (Alberta Environment. Figure 14 and 15 indicate the geographical location of wells with extreme leakage potential in the field. Wells in the Zama Field were stimulated by acidizing the completed interval. These score distributions indicate that deep leakage potential is quite prevalent within the Zama Field. Both deep and shallow leakage potentials are broadly distributed throughout the field. It was assumed that the unknown well cement types would be type neat and would. The low potential for leakage scores. 1990). Historically.SPE 112924 7 The analysis of shallow leakage potential in the Pembina Field indicates leakage potential similar to the reported provincial average of 6. Cement type data are electronically available only for 40% of the wells. Investigation to determine zonal isolation after stimulation in wells indicated as having extreme DLP would be beneficial in determining the actual effect of the stimulation on zonal isolation. with several wells having five or more completions. The distribution of wells. each well has two completions. at an average depth of about 1200 m (ERCB. The wells are generally vertical with multiple completions. Because the Zama Field is made up of several hundred reefs. the cementing requirements have been 100 m above the Slave Point Formation. respectively. The productive zone is the carbonate reef Keg River Formation at an average depth of 1600 m. ground water. which overlays the Keg River formation. The analysis of the deep leakage potential indicates that wells are predominantly cemented with neat cements that pose the lowest risk for deterioration when in contact with CO2 compared to other common wellbore cements. Figures 10 and 11 also indicate that the potential for shallow well leakage (SLP) in the field may be of lesser concern and is not as widely distributed as the potential for deep well leakage (DLP). with only 7% of wells falling in the extreme categories. the distribution charts indicate that there are large numbers of wells in the high categories for both DLP and SLP. surface water or other potential leak receptors. This assumption may underestimate the potential for deep well leakage. The deep leakage potential appears to have a denser distribution across the field. The Base of Ground Water Protection varies between 75 and 400 m. . therefore. Within the uncemented depths of the wellbores several productive intervals have been discovered since many of the wells were drilled. Although Figures 14 and 15 focus on extreme DLP and SLP scores. the leakage scores may not reflect future leakage potential due to abandonment method. 1988). The presence of CaCO3 has an adverse effect on external casing corrosion and ultimately casing failure (Caswell.1% of wells in Alberta. The well locations of a particular DLP or SLP score or range of score may be used to determine potential consequences by overlaying population density. however. On average. or perforated intervals. Very few wells are hydraulically fractured.1% (Bachu and Watson 2006). have a lower potential for deterioration due to CO2 attack. The reported casing failures for the Zama Field are 6% of all wells compared to failures of 1. may contribute to gas leaking to surface. this information would be useful when determining which pool would be most desirable for CO2 EOR or sequestration and gives some indication of the potential economic impact of wellbore remediation prior to injection of CO2 or acid gas at the scoping stage. More study is required to determine the durability of neat cement and bridge plugs to improve the confidence of these findings. These high numbers of casing failures may be explained by the exposure of casing to the Wabamum Group and Banff Formation which are limestones within the exposed casing depths. however older wells have setting depths less than 200 m. may be underestimated if wellbore abandonment procedures do not change in the future. Zama Field Wellbore Leakage Potential The Zama Field was discovered in the mid 1960’s. by either DLP or SLP scores. Overlying gas-bearing formations such as the Jean Marie and the Beaverhill Lake. Wells that have been cased and completed are typically abandoned with a bridge plug set within 15 m of the perforated interval and with 8 m of cement dump-bailed on top. Surface casing setting depth is at approximately 275 m. Based on the available information it appears as though wells in the Pembina Field could withstand project implementation of CO2 EOR or CO2 sequestration if wells abandoned in the future use a more robust downhole abandonment method than bridge plug capped with cement. for the Zama Field is presented in Figures 12 and 13.

This assessment for deep leakage potential is based on: 1. 41 3 u 3 4u u 4 u 3 3 1 4 u 3 1 3 4 3u u 3 1 4 4 4 u " u 34 " u 4 3 3 " 1 u 4 "4 3 5"5" " "" 1 5 4 5 3 5 4 3 5b 4 " 43 5 5" Š u 4 Š3 u 31 55 3 4 3 3 4 5 4 4 5 5 4 b 3 3 3 5 3 33b 54 5* 5""5 4 uu u4 3 5 " 1 3 5 4 3 *Š 4 u 451" 5 3 4 4" 3 55 4 33 u5 5 " 4 " 3 5 4 *3" 553 "15 u 3 5 4 3 u3 4 3 1 5 4 u 5 4 u 5 M 3 * 1 5 5 4 3 4 3 1 3 1 43 u 41*4 3 5 4 3 3 G 5 55 4 Š 5 5 5b 4 b 1 b 4 43 15 4 41 5 "3 5 3 341 4 u 3 5 4 41 *35 1 3 b 33 u3 " u 4 1 1 5 4 54 5" 4 1 4 1 *4 Š 55 4 I* 4 E *5 G 54 Š 5 4 3 4 5 E 5 4 Š 4 u 5 u 5 4 u G Š 5 1 4 5 4 b3 5 4 5G 1 34 4 1u 5 4 431 1 3 " 3 5 G 4 b 1 4 u " 5 4 4 * 5 4 5 5 G * 5 G 4 b 4 4 u 5 34 54 u *5 E u 4 415 1 5 514 G 4 u 4b 55 Š 54 5 G u33 3 15Š3 3 5 "5 4 55"3 Š 5Š 3 4 *53 G 534 Š 333 55 4 51 u 334 5 E5 4 5G 5 5 1 " *43 4 4 1 "4 u 4 35 54 1 5 4 54 54 **u 3 u u 4 4 G4 4 u 5 5G*1 4 5 555 * 4 3u 555 5 4 331Š 54 55u 54G E 5 u 3 3u 4 E 4 " 5 4 3 4 5 b 4 5 4 5 5 4 3 " 5 5 * 5 u 3 34 5 4" 4 u 1 15 3 5 4 E5"5 43 5 4 5 4 5 4 G 33 33 " 1 5 3 415 3 4 55 G Š 4 5 4 G 5 3 4 5 5 4 b 5 34 5 4 54 4 3u 5 3 34 5 4 3 4 1 555 4 31 1 *1G Š 5 55O 4 54 1u *15 3 34 455 u 3 5 3 135 G GI5 4 4 II 4 u G 5 4 45 4 5 4 Š 4 u3 4 5 G *54 4 4 5 3 4Š * 1 * u 5 5 * Š 4 5 4 5 G G 5 *5 4 33 u13 334 5G 1 "4 5 4 *1 5 5 Š 4 3 1 *4 4 5 34 1 53 Š K 5 4 1 * 4 5 "5 " *4 b" b 5 3 4 G3 4 u u5 4 G 51 4 43 5 * 4 *45 4 Š 5 G b 1 4 5 3 5 4 b " 4*u G 5 4 u 53u5 4 Š u 5 3 b 1 u 4 5 3 5 u 4 G 5 5 4 " 5 3 E 5 4 Š b 5 * E 1 3 54 55 5 3 4 u 5 G 3 54 5 3 45 4 Š 5 G GE G 43 3 u 5 * 35 "3 " *u 4 5 4 G 5 3 1 4 G5 3 5"4 35 * 5 5 5"5 5 5 4 u 53 E 4 " 1u 5 54 5 b 5 5 3 4 *53 4 1 u 5 G 4 *u 3 54 5 3 G 3 4 5 5 4 5 " Š G 5 4 b 4 3 1 4 G *O 14 3 5b 3 545u 3 " 5 5Š G u3 5 5 G Š 5 5 555 4 4 5 4 43 5 3 u 51 *b 5u 4 5 G4 4 5 G 4 5 * 4 5IE4 3b 53 4 G ub 4 54 4 *1515 "4 u 5 4 5 1 5u 55 54 4 3 34 4 5 5 451 5 4 5 5 1 4 4 b5"E 15 3 54 4 u 5 1 5 5 55 Š5 4 u 5 511 55 * " 4 u 4 O "u 4 bG 15 4 5 Š 35 *1 u 4 30+ 00 + 25 90 20 10 15 80 10 70 5 60 0 0 0 0 0 200 0 20 Extreme 50 40 High 0 60 Low Medium 40 80 250 0 100 300 30 Extreme 0 High 20 120 Low Medium 10 N u m b e r o f W e lls w ith D L P Sc o re 140 Figure 13: Zama Field SLP Score distribution. if zonal abandonment practices change to some other.8 SPE 112924 150 100 50 0 0 0 SLP Score DLP Score Figure 14: Location of Zama wells with extreme DLP shown in red against all field wells in black.1% of all cased wells in the province had shallow leakage in the form of surface casing vent flow (annular pressure) reported (Bachu and Watson 2006). N u m b e r o f W e lls w ith SL P Sc o re Figure 12: Zama Field DLP Score distribution. 18% of the wells have extreme potential of shallow leakage. These stimulations may reduce the near wellbore seal. more robust system the assigned value for zonal abandonment could be reduced to one. 4. with 60% of the wells having multiple acid stimulations. The assigned zonal abandonment value of two for wells that have not yet been abandoned may be too high. . Thirteen percent of wells have been abandoned with a bridge plug. Fifty-five percent of the wells have multiple completions. which may occur in the event that CO2 or acid gas is introduced to the historical producing formations. and deep. The remainder of the wells have not yet been abandoned. 2. and may reduce the time for CO2 or acid gas breakthrough to the wellbore. increasing the potential for leakage between zones. The bold green grid indicates 6x6 miles/square. 3u 3 4 4 u1 u 4 4 u 3 3 u 1 3 1 4 3 4 u 3 b 4 " 4 u u 34 " u 4 3 3 " 3 1 u 4 " "4 55 " " 1 3 4 5 4 5 3 4 5 " 433 " " 1 5b 4 u 4 5 5" 4 3 u 4 3 Š3 u 3 Š 55 5 4 3 3 44 3 4 5 4 5 b5 4 3 5 4 5* 3 53 3 33b uu 5"" 4 u4 3 "5 1 3 " 4 5 5 4 u 555 4 3 *Š 4 4" 3 u 4 1 4 4 " 3 3 33 u 55 5 u " 515 4 *3" 5 3 u u 43 3 5 4 u 31 4 3 *44 3 15 " u 51M 55 4 3 4* 5 1 3 3 5 b 4 3 4 3 1 43 u 41 3 5 G 4 Š4 5b 4 b 5 3 5 3 5 5 1 4 3 4 1 5 4 4 43 4 1 u "3 5 4 u b 5 4 5 *3 14 1 3 33 3 41 " u 1 5 u3 5 u3 13 4 5 1 5" 4 1 * Š 4 1 *4 I* 4 5Š 4 E4 5 4 Š 5G * Š 5 5u E 354 5 54 5 u u G 541 b 5" 4 G 54 4 5 4 u 34 44 1 43 " 33 5b 3u 5G G 4 *4 4 5 4 4 1 5u 54 1 5 4 5b 4 5 *1 4 3 13 3G 5 E * 5 G 4 u 5 u u 4 5 14 4 55 5 4 1 5 G Š 54 54 5 "34 Š 4 43 u 4 ""5 b 315Š3 3 1 5534 G4 *5 3 Š 54 u 5 5 4 5 4 E *535 5 4 333 5 4 1 " "5 4 1 5 3Š 3 u 5 45 1 5 4 553 54 5 1**u 54 54u 3 u 5Gu 5 4 G 4 5 5G 4 *1 335 3u 5 4 4 4 u ŠE 4 55 4G u *E3 "*55 4555553 3 3 3 u 53 4 1 5 54 4 " 55 b 4 3 5"5 u 14 4 4 5 4 3 4 "u E 3 55"31 5G 14 5 "3 3 4 3 5 5 4 4 3 4 4 5 5 G Š 1 55 534 4 5O 5 45 G 3 445 4 b 5 5 5 4 54 4 3u 5 1 3 34 3 4 55 4 1 554 4 *11G Š 4 5u *1u u 3 331 555 4 5I5 4 G 4 3 135 5 G G 3 4 I5I 4 4 5 Š u34 4 *54 5 4 4 *44 5 G 4 34 * u 5 1 Š 5 * Š 4 5G 4 5 5 " "4 G 4 5G *5 4* 3 3 u13 33 4 1 1 5 4 5 Š 3 5 *4 1 4 5 34 * Š 55 K 5 4 1 *1 4 " 4 5 "5 b" b 5 3 4 4 3 u G G3 u "4 51 4 43 b 4 *45 4 Š 5 * 4 3 3b 5 51uu * 4 " 5 G 4 G 5u 4 5 Š u 4 5 5 bG 1 u 54 4 5 3 5u 4 5u " 33 4 Š 5 3 E 5 4 * 5 1 5 b 5 E 5 3 E 4 u 5 54 3 54 5 G 3 4 G G Š G 44 5 5 55 * 43 3 u 35 "3 " *u 5 4 G 3 5"4 3 1 4 5 5 55 5 55 4 u 3G 53 * 5 E 4 15 " u 54 35 5 5 "5 3 4 *5 1 *u 3 54 5 5G G 4 u 5 4 4 b 3 5 G "5 3 4 Š 5 G 1 G * 4 1 3 O b 3 5 3 u 5 3 4 51 " 5u u 4 4 3 5 5Š G b Š 5 4 5 43 5 5 3 555 4 4 54 u *b 5u 4 5 G4 4 5 G 4 * 5 4 4 3b *1 55 G 55 4 " 4 4 ub 4 54 4 5 55 IE 4 3 1 u 5u 54 3 34 4 5 4 51 5 4 5 1 4 4 15 b5u 5 4 3 555 "E u1 5 4 54 5 15 1 5 5 Š " 5 54 5 u 5 4 u G 1"5 4 u 5 4 O 5 Š3 b * *1 5 4 3u 3 u 4 1 4 4 u 4 Within this analysis the wells in the Zama Field show significant potential for leakage. well above the provincial average. Previous work identified that approximately 6. Eighty percent of wells are stimulated by acidizing. thus affecting isolation. determined from ERCB data. Approximately 30% (based on known and extrapolated data) of the wells have cement in the deeper regions of the wellbore that may be susceptible to CO2 or acid gas attack because of the additives used. 4 3 4 b 4 u 3 u 4 4 u 4 4 3 3 4 4 u 4 u 4 3 1 u 4 u3 13 Figure 15: Location of Zama wells with extreme SLP shown in red against all field wells in black. The potential for deep leakage shows that 28% of the wells in the Zama Field have an extreme deep leakage potential. 3. Based on the analysis of the Zama Field. This result is expected since the reported incidence of surface casing vent flow. which is independent of fluid type. In the future. both shallow. within the Zama Field is 30% of cased wells. The bold green grid indicates 6x6 miles/square.

. Strazisar. Energy Resources Conservation Board. Strazisar. G. Bachu.. 244. The tool can also be used in risk assessment analysis if potential consequences of leakage are overlain. Watson. Carbon Dioxide Corrosion in Oilwell Cements.pdf. Calgary. External Casing Corrosion Survey. E...SPE 112924 9 Conclusion The development of a computer-based tool to compile and mine available regulatory data to determine the potential of a well to leak has created the ability to conduct a first-pass evaluation of large numbers of wellbores to determine their relative potential for leakage. USA. Edmonton.. Alberta Environment.. Onan.. More study is required to determine the durability of cement and bridge plugs to improve the confidence of this evaluation. 1213 March. II – Part 2:1997-2001. 2004. T. Directive 009: Guide to Minimum Requirements for Cementing Intermediate or Production Casing. Paper SPE 12608. Braunt. June 19-22.A. Presented at the Rocky Mountain Regional Meeting of the Society of Petroleum Engineers. S. 2007b. A. 2007... Amarillo. Vol. Elsevier. Schremp. Nelson. Las Vegas. B.. A. 19-21 May. D. Well Cementing. 2006a. ERCB. 1984. R. Presented at SPE Deep Drilling and Production Symposium. Dzombak. T. Guillot. USA. . Krilov...J.. Investigation of a Long Term Cement Deterioration Under a High-Temperature. ground water information or the presence of H2S along the wellbore. Billings. B. Degradation of Well Cement by CO2 under Geologic Sequestration Conditions. 1975. Sugar Land. Paper SPE 58771. Norway. M. Radonjic. Proceedings of the 7th International Conference on Greenhouse Gas Control Technologies.G. acid gas disposal or CO2 sequestration scheme. second edition...info/docs/wellbore/3rdWellboreMtg_FinalReportSummary. D. September 5-9. 2007. S. D. Canada. second edition. Possible Indicators for CO2 Leakage along Wells. aka sustained casing pressure) or gas migration.V. Available at. 2006b. USA.co2captureandstorage. D. Roberson. CO2 Corrosion in the Anadarko Basin. Well Cementing. Z. Paper SPE 12593. 2005. 1988. Marsters. D. Energy Resources Conservation Board. Duguid. Calgary. G. D. Kutchko. M. The Effect of CO2 Sequestration on Oil Well Cements. 1986. Directive 20: Well Abandonment Guide.L. Paper SPE 15176... 8-9 March. 58. Trondheim. ERCB. Presented at the International Symposium on Formation Damage Control. Presented at the Permian Basin Oil and Gas Recovery Conference.. Canada. M. Lafayette. D. Dzombak. New Technology Magazine.. Multiple Editions. The tool need not be specifically used to determine leakage in the presence of acid gas or CO2. B.. G. Environmental Science Technology... Presented at the SPE-AIME 48th Annual Fall Meeting. J. Calgary.G. The use of this tool will speed up the wellbore assessment process by zeroing in on potential problem wells which may require closer scrutiny prior to the implementation of a CO2 EOR. careful well evaluation should be conducted to determine if wells in a particular CO2 EOR or sequestration scheme are at risk for leakage. 2006. Nelson. References Alberta Environment 1995.. Don’t Fight Mother Nature. USA 1-3 April. Morris. Thaulow. E.. Effect of Supercritical Coarbon Dioxide (CO2) on Construction Materials. Caswell. Schlumberger. Enhanced Oil Recovery. B. USA. Gale. USA. Guillot. Paper presented at the 8th International Conference on Greenhouse Gas Control Technologies. such as population density. Canada. June: 13-16.. Celia. Canada. Vancouver. Wilson.. Effects of Supercritical Carbon Dioxide on Well Cements. Degradation of Wellbore Cements: Results of Long Term Experiments and Effect of Additives. Midland.. eds. Sour Gas downhole Environment. Bruckdorfer. Schlumberger. Z. A. and Thambimuthu.. 1990. K. G. B. both shallow and deep. B. Presented at the 3rd Wellbore Integrity Network Meeting of the IEA Greenhouse Gas R&D Programme. Santa Fe. N. N. F. Canada. Elsevier. Sugar Land. Mandecki. 2007a. Kutchko. Lowry. T. USA. University of Calgary. B. USA. Lowry.R.. Loncaric. 2324 February. ST-55: Alberta’s Useable Groundwater Base of Groundwater Protection Information. Miksa.V. 41(12):4787-4792. 30 September. www. but can also be used to evaluate the potential for other types of leakage such as annular pressure (surface casing vent flow. Thaulow. Browning. 1984. Paper SPE 4667.. Acknowledgements The authors would like to thank Django Dunn (Silent D Software) for the database programming.R. Based on the findings of this study. CD ROM.3 October. 2000. R. 2007. Scherer. Report prepared for the National Association of Corrosion Engineers..

Galveston. Griffith. J.10 SPE 112924 Watson. Paper SPE 76333. D... White. Presented at the SPE Gas Technology Symposium. W. Watson. Evaluation of the Potential for Gas and CO2 Leakage Along Wellbores. Presented at the SPE E&P Environmental and Safety Conference. Specialized Cement Design and Placement Procedures Prove Sucessful for Mitigating Casing Vent Flows-Case Histories.E.L. 5–7 March.. 4-7 October. 2007. A Laboratory Study of Cement and Resin Plugs Placed With Thru-Tubing Dump Bailers.L. 30 April-2 May. 2002..M. Barker. Calvert. USA. Bachu.. USA.S. Canada. 1992. Paper SPE 24574 presented at the SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition. . Washington.G. T. S. Getzlaf. Calgary.. D. T.. J. Paper SPE 106817.