February 8, 2013
Amendments to Directive 040: Pressure and Deliverability Testing Oil and Gas Wells
The Energy Conservation Board (ERCB) announces amendments to Directive 040: Pressure and Deliverability Testing Oil and Gas Wells, which is available on the ERCB website, www.ercb.ca.
Currently, the ERCB requires licensees/operators to conduct initial pressure tests on most productive exploratory, discovery, development, or step-out wells. The ERCB has received several exemption requests for initial pressure tests on heavy oil wells with an oil density greater than 925 kg/m3. As part of our commitment to efficient and effective regulatory processes, the ERCB evaluated the need for this initial pressure test requirement for heavy oil wells. The evaluation indicated that most data collected from initial pressure tests for heavy oil wells with a density greater than 925 kg/m3 is unreliable, not representative of the reservoir, difficult to obtain, and as a result not broadly used by the ERCB.
Consequently, the ERCB has determined that initial pressure tests on heavy oil wells with an oil density greater than 925 kg/m3 are no longer required. Licensees/operators are reminded that if they conduct an initial pressure test on a heavy oil well, the well test results must be submitted to the ERCB in accordance with sections 11.005 and 11.120 of the Oil and Gas Conservation Regulations.
The changes to Directive 040 are effective immediately and are as follows:
Sections 3.2, 4.2, and 4.6.2
- Initial pressure tests will no longer be required for oil wells in heavy oil pools with an oil density greater than 925 kg/m3.
- This section has been renamed Compliance Assurance and has been updated to clarify and reflect the current practices and processes in alignment with Directive 019: Compliance Assurance.
- 6.4: Review of Enforcement Actions – This section has been added to align with compliance assurance processes in Directive 007: Volumetric and Infrastructure Requirements.
- Interim Directives 97-05: Pressure and Deliverability Testing: Oil and Gas Wells in Alberta and 98-04: Electronic Capture of Well Test Data have been rescinded.
Directive 040 is available from ERCB Information Services, Suite 1000, 250 – 5 Street SW; telephone: 403-297-8311 or 1-855-297-8311 (toll free); fax: 403-297-7040; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. The directive is also available on the ERCB website, www.ercb.ca.
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