Innovation, Integration Enable Success in Guyana-Suriname Basin

The authors of this paper describe the path of an operator’s successful exploration program that has integrated geologic and geophysical understanding and new technology to discover 8 billion BOE at the time of writing.

Oil rig in the Caribbean sea only 30 miles away from a tourist Resort.
Getty Images.

Exploration in the Guyana-Suriname Basin has been a decades-long endeavor, including technical challenges and a lengthy history of drilling with no offshore success before the 2015 Liza discovery. The collection of extensive seismic data has been leveraged to enable successful exploration of multiple play types across the basin. Further data collection has enabled the operator to adopt interpretation techniques that are applied across the entire basin to characterize and understand the subsurface better.

Historical Context

The first wells drilled in the Guyana-Suriname Basin were onshore; the Rose Hall well in Guyana in 1941 first found oil shows. Rumors of oil in the region, and hopes that the prolific hydrocarbon systems present in Venezuela extended into Guyana and Suriname, led geologists from the Standard Oil Company to conduct initial reconnaissance and seismic and geochemical studies.

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