Wednesday, September 15, 2010
Just to finish out the little series of last week, when we were looking at the "peak oil poster-children" - countries and regions famous for declining oil production. We saw that the United States had had a minor reprieve in recent years with a price-driven uptick in drilling and production, while the North Sea had pretty much continued in rapid decline.
Above is the graph for Mexican production, which was in dramatic decline from about 2004 to mid 2009 as the famous Cantarell field started to be exhausted. Mexico has always had a somewhat unique set of problems in managing it's oil supply, so it's not clear how much the experience would generalize elsewhere.
The arrest in decline in 2009/2010 is probably due to increased production from Ku-Maloop-Zaab, which is also expected to peak and decline shortly. There's also been a big surge in rigs working in the country, at least until this year:
I guess the jury is still out here. Mexico probably does have quite a bit of oil left, so the question is more around the institutional barriers to exploiting it.
Posted by Stuart Staniford at 5:23 AM