Hydrocarbon Maturation Process: For Strategic Planning & Business Decisions
Updated: Dec 16, 2020
Hydrocarbon Maturation (HCM) planning is process of identifying and categorization of hydrocarbon resources based on their technical & commercial maturity and range of uncertainty.
The process is bedrock on which portfolio growth and strategic business planning decisions are made. The process helps in providing long-term growth and cashflow to the company through capital projects. The process is critical for two reasons:
Internal Business Decision Making
External Disclosure to SEC
The opportunities in the portfolio are categorized according to level of uncertainty in the resource volume estimation and extent of technical and commercial maturity. A project is assigned to each opportunity in each category, to take specific actions to reduce the uncertainty and move and matures to the next category, until, a resource becomes production or barrel in the tank providing the cashflow.
Broadly, the resources are categorized in three categories
1- Prospective Resources
These are undiscovered hydrocarbon resources, with highest degree of volume uncertainty and little or no technical / commercial maturity. There are several sub categories within this group; Play, Lead and Prospects.
2- Contingent Resources
These are discovered resources, where uncertainty of hydrocarbon existence has been been eliminated with the discovery well in the previous exploration phase. There is an uncertainty in the resource volume range for the commercial development. The development plans are not technically and commercially mature and have to go through various stages of capital project or opportunity development before Final Investment Decision can be made. Contingent resources are opportunities under development or planning.
These resources are technically and commercially mature for the development and production.