Canada's Questerre studying new completion technique
Canadian producer Questerre Energy has commissioned a study and report on a new completion technique to replace conventional hydraulic fracturing, the company said February 1.
By using lower pressures and rates than the standard currently used for fracturing new rock, the technique takes advantage of existing natural fractures to stimulate the formation. The technique is similar to an approach utilised in geothermal projects.
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Maurice Dusseault, professor of engineering geology at the University of Waterloo, has been engaged to conduct the study. Dusseault was on the direction committee for the strategic environmental assessments completed by the government of Quebec.
“This new technique could be incredibly effective in a naturally fractured formation like the Quebec Utica,” Questerre CEO Michael Binnion said. “Subject to new legislation, we hope to apply to complete two wells in Quebec to prove the efficacy of this new approach.”
Quebec has implemented a moratorium on fracking in the province, essentially stranding an estimated contingent resource of nearly 6 trillion ft3 of natural gas Questerre holds in the Utica shale beneath the Quebec Lowlands. Questerre has been pursuing a variety of initiatives to eventually produce this resource, including various blue hydrogen and carbon capture and storage opportunities, but so far, those proposals have fallen on deaf government ears, Binnion said.
“We encourage the government to reconsider the benefits of our zero-emissions project to meet their climate goals.”
The final report is expected before the end of the first quarter.