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Cover Story ustainability Mictzaea te ttespan ot an to gas folds an ongoing, big-picture concern for eneray companies. With huge investments nescad just to stat the flow cof hydrocarbons from a wel, keesing production levels at optimum rates for as Jong as possible is a nocassiy: tho world stil res heavily on petroleum, ‘The challonge of such resarvoir sustainablty’ has been partially met with low- predicting software andl on-site ‘monitoring tools. When flow rates drop, the injection of fhids can boost production higher again. But there is more to the pzzle than how fast the olor gas wil ‘come out, and for how long. A ptroloum is pumped ‘tom ts original bed, subsidence and compaction of the sols surrounding ‘the resorvot can atfect rock permeabiy, the integrty of boreholes, equipment function, and even the gaology ofthe land around the production sites. This happens bacause the extraction of petroleum from underground reservoirs leads to a reduction in pore fluid pressure vithin the reservoir, which results in a rec'strbulion of stess in the rock formation, Sinoe rock detormations are often plas, this produces subsidence of the ground around the reservok that expands over time as extraction continues. As the rock daforms, the permeablty ofthe rock tselt Changes, which then affects the flow of fluid within the reservoir. The phenomena of 12. SIMULIA Community News May/June 2012 Eni develops full-scale geomechanical models with automated workflow in Abaqus {uid flow and mechanical deformations aro thus inexorably coupled to each other (808 gue 1) = Fue J. The NASA mages above show ther ‘ote production othe Lost is arcu of Galton, ing Subsidence challenges petroleum industry both on and offshore Reservoir compaction has been extenshely investigated to determine fs impact on both hyerocarbon field production and enirormontal stably, orshore or shore. The eects can be curative, For example, inthe Netherlands, subsidence a he large Groningen gas fe, though only onthe andr of tens of centmaters to dale, poses ‘Sgncan long-term challenges since lage portions of he Netherlands ae below 0a evel and protected by exes. Some important, much-documented lessons tom the past clearly demonstrate the negative impact of the phenomenon overtime. The city of Long Beach, Calfornia, experienced subsidence of some 20 square miles of land, witha surface dip of 29 feet near the Conta, due te extraction from tha huge Wilmington olfield, Subsidence from the Goose Creek alias in Taxas atfected ‘vor four square mies, with up to fve fest of sutace drop. Remediation in both ‘casas cost mons of dotars. Citshara, the Exotsk fel in the North Sea suffered seatloor subsidence that required highly expensive interventions to re-estai safely of the producing platiorms. While the majority of oll and gas projects don't encouinter challenges at sich alange scale, petroleum engineers now clealy Understand the value of staring with \dooper knowledge ofthe tran at tho earliest stages of reservoir development A more realistic view of what lies beneath {As an integrated energy company oper in engineering, construction, and ailing booth off- and onshore for customers around the world, Ralys Eni Sip.A. devotes: Considerable manpower and resources to research into reservoir management. Their work hops clionts close to home as well Gas feds in tne Actiatic Sea have become ‘a major source of energy for te country. (Due to the particular morphology of the ng