Unconventional Resource Development and Induced Seismicity in Western Canada

Unconventional Resource Development and Induced Seismicity in Western Canada

←  SPE - Calgary Section

Unconventional Resource Development and Induced Seismicity in Western Canada

Date: Tuesday, 31 January 2017
Speaker: Dr. David Eaton
University of Calgary

Location: Calgary Petroleum Club
Time: 11:30 – 1:30 pm
Cost: $45 SPE Members, $55 Non-members, $15 Students


The development of oil and gas resources in many unconventional plays throughout North America relies upon well-completion technologies, particularly hydraulic fracturing, in order to enhance reservoir permeability. Recent studies in western Canada have shown that, for about 0.3% of well completions, hydraulic fracturing can trigger earthquakes by activating slip on a nearby fault. Areas that appear to be most prone to anomalous induced seismicity (AIS) include the Kaybob-Duvernay region in central Alberta, the Montney play and Horn River basin in northeastern BC. Provincial regulatory agencies have introduced management protocols, or traffic-light systems, which mandate a halt in operations in the case of a nearby seismic event that exceeds a specified red-light threshold (e.g. local magnitude 4.0). Risk factors that predispose certain areas to AIS from hydraulic fracturing, including locations and state of stress on pre-existing faults, are currently being investigated. This presentation will provide an overview of the current state of knowledge for this issue and highlight areas where academia, industry and governments are actively collaborating to seek solutions.

Speaker Bio:

Professor David Eaton holds the NSERC/Chevron Industrial Research Chair in Microseismic System Dynamics in the Department of Geoscience at the University of Calgary. Together with graduate students and postdoctoral fellows, his work focuses primarily on advancement of research, education and technological innovations in microseismic methods and their practical applications for resource development, with a secondary focus on the deep lithospheric structure of continents. In 2007, he rejoined the University of Calgary as Head of the Department of Geoscience, after an 11-year academic career at the University of Western Ontario. His postdoctoral research experience included work at Arco’s Research and Technical Services (Plano, Texas) and the Geological Survey of Canada (Ottawa). He has over 125 publications in peer-reviewed journals and books, including articles in Nature and Science. 


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January 31, 2017
From 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM
Calgary Petroleum Club