Petroleum Resources and Reserves: An Overview of Recommended Geological Practices

Petroleum Resources and Reserves: An Overview of Recommended Geological Practices

INSTRUCTOR: Robert ‘Bob’ Shoup
DISCIPLINE: Geoscience
CEUS: 0.8


Contact SCA’s Training Department at to schedule an In-House course.

WHO SHOULD ATTEND: Geologists, geophysicists, engineers, support staff, supervisors, managers, resources or reserves evaluators, financial analysts, investors, bankers or anyone who needs to understand the recommended geological methods to estimate resources and reserves.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: The consistency of resources or reserves estimates is not only important for public companies reporting to their shareholders and the SEC, but essential for financial analysts, banks, and investors considering participation in an exploration opportunity, purchase of a producing asset, or investment in an oil and gas company. In each case, the bottom line is, how much oil or gas can ultimately be recovered, and what can be placed on the books and produced with an acceptable return on investment.

There are many challenges to estimating resources and reserves, which are categorized to reflect uncertainty, including the fact that resources and reserves determinations require a multidisciplinary approach involving both geoscience and engineering. This course will present geological methods and techniques, and more specifically concentrate on the structural, net pay and geometrical considerations for Deterministic Estimation of reservoir rock volume.

The Guidelines for Application of the Petroleum Resources Management System (PRMS) was updated in 2011 to recommend derivation of reserves estimates by either deterministic scenarios or using a probabilistic distribution. The starting point for all resources or reserves determinations is estimation of the size of the container and the volume of hydrocarbons in-place. This course covers industry recommended and accepted geoscience methods and techniques to obtain the best possible estimates of reservoir volume and in-place hydrocarbons given the uncertainties involved. The Joint Committee of Reserves Evaluators Training (JCORET) has reviewed, approved and endorsed Petroleum Resources and Reserves: An Overview of Recommended Geological Practices.

The one (1) day version of this course can be expanded into a two-day course with the addition of exercises demonstrating application of the recommended geological practices.


LEARNING OUTCOMES: Proper, geologically sound, industry sanctioned and accepted methodology for estimating reservoir volumes, and oil and gas in place.

  • General Introduction
  • Reserves vs Resources
  • Mapping Surfaces: structure maps, reservoir top and base of porosity maps
  • Mapping of trapping faults (geology/geophysics)
  • Down-dip limits in vertically stratified reservoir(s)
  • Net sand and net pay
  • Wedge zones (water, hydrocarbon and fault)
  • Thickness determinations in deviated wells and dipping beds
  • Net-to-gross ratios
  • Application of porosity, permeability and saturation cut-offs
  • Isochore maps (volume determinations for bottom and edge water reservoirs)