Exxon’s gas focus helps it to bolster 2009 oil reserves

City A.M. Reporter
Exxon Mobil added 2bn barrels of oil equivalent (BOE) to its proved reserves in 2009, or 133 per cent of its production for that year, the largest US oil firm said yesterday.

Exxon used long-term pricing to estimate its reserves instead of using the 12-month averages required under rules from the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the company said.

Replacement of more than 100 per cent of annual oil and gas output is seen as a sign of growth by investors.

Exxon said the amount of its replacement reserves was split nearly evenly, comprising 51 per cent liquids and 49 per cent gas.

However, large Western oil companies’ efforts to boost reserves have been stalled as they are increasingly barred from investing in the world’s richest oil prospects.
For example, countries including Venezuela and Russia reserve their richest fields for state-owned oil companies.

Reserves additions from the Papua New Guinea liquefied natural gas (LNG) project and the Gorgon Jansz LNG project in Australia totalled almost 1bn BOE, Exxon said.

Using the SEC’s pricing basis, proved reserves replacement was 1.5bn BOE, replacing 100 per cent of production, including the effect of asset sales, oil sands extracted by mining and equity company reserves.

ExxonMobil’s proved reserve base, using the company’s definition of year-end reserves, increased to 23.3bn BOE in 2009.