Market behavior is not always predictable: commodity prices can rapidly change; political and corporate strategies are dynamic. This variability in market forces may drive immediate and significant changes to the production plan. Unfortunately, large changes to production rates (up and down) can cause formation damage, permanently affecting reservoir productivity and reserves. Consequently, responding to market variability requires informed decision making and an effective communication process. Each reservoir has unique characteristics. Learning from the effects of operational changes improves the understanding of the reservoir and can substantially improve the decision-making process. Reservoir surveillance and simulation provide the ability to analyze, model, and forecast reservoir behavior throughout its productive life. This data acquisition and analysis provides insight necessary to determine mitigation and repair strategies as issues arise.
This paper reviews market drivers for different types of operating companies and associated operational responses. Reservoir impacts of various operational changes (production rates, methods and treatments) are described. Information sharing and effective communication across the organization are necessary for the effective development of a petroleum resource. To address this, common issues and a recommended decision making process are provided.