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COALBED METHANE:

SCIENTIFIC, ENVIRONMENTAL AND ECONOMIC EVALUATION


Coalbed Methane:
Scientific, Environmental and
Economic Evaluation

Edited by

Maria Mastalerz
Indiana University,
Bloomington, U.S.A.

Miryam Glikson
The University of Queensland,
Brisbane, Australia

and

Suzanne D. Golding
The University of Queensland,
Brisbane, Australia

SPRINGER-SCIENCE+BUSINESS MEDIA, B.V.


A c.I.P. Catalogue record for this book is available from the Library of Congress.

ISBN 978-90-481-5217-9 ISBN 978-94-017-1062-6 (eBook)


DOI 10.1007/978-94-017-1062-6

Printed on acid-free paper

All Rights Reserved


© 1999 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht
Originally published by Kluwer Academic Publishers in 1999
Softcover reprint of the hardcover 1st edition 1999
No part of the material protected by this copyright notice may be reproduced or
utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical,
including photocopying, recording or by any information storage and
retrieval system, without written permission from the copyright owner.
Table of Contents

PREFACE: (M. Mastalerz & M. Glikson) IX

REGULATORY REGIMES; STRATEGIES ECONOMIC ANALYSIS AND


REGULATIONS OF COALBED METHANE
1. Coal seam gas in Queensland from there to where? I S.G. Scott
2. Developing a new coal seam gas regime for Queensland I S.G. Matheson 11
3. The Fairview coal seam gasfield, Comet Ridge, Queensland, Australia I S.G.
Scott 33
4. Cost benefit analysis of coalbed methane recovery activities in Australia and
New Zealand - Implications for commercial projects and government policy
I P. Massarotto 33
5. The use of Monte Carlo analysis to evaluate prospective coalbed methane
properties I D.M. Zuber 55

RESOURCE ASSESSMENT; EXPLORATION & RESERVOIR


EVALUATION
1. Defining coalbed methane exploration fairways: An example from the
Piceance Basin, Rocky Mountain Foreland, Western United States I R. Tyler,
W.R. Kaiser and A.R. Scott 67
2. Improving coal gas recovery with microbially enhanced coalbed methane I
A.R. Scott 89
3. Coalbed methane exploration in structurally complex terrain: A balance
between tectonics and hydrogeology I F.M. Dawson 111
4. Coalbed methane exploration results of the Liulin Permit in China I W. Zuo,
X. Wang, W. Ian and W. Zhang 123
5. Residual gas content of coal in the light of observations from the Upper
Silesian Coal Basin, Poland I I. Grzybek 139

SOURCES & THERMAL HISTORY; EFFECT ON QUANTITY, QUALITY,


RETENTION AND MIGRATION OF COALBED METHANE
1. Coal composition and mode of maturation, a determining factor in the quan-
tifying hydrocarbon species generated I M. Glikson, C.J. Boreham and D.S.
Thiede 155
2. The relationship between gas in coal seams and artificial coalification gas
under hydrothermal pressure systems I T. Yamasaki and A.S. Roces 187
3. Coalbed gas content and gas undersaturation I G. Khavari-Khorasani and J.K.
Michelsen 207
vi

4. Higher hydrocarbon gases in southern Sydney Basin coals I M.M. Faiz, A.


Saghafi and N.R. Sherwood 233
5. Source and timing of coal seam gas generation in Bowen Basin coals I S.D.
Golding, K.A. Baublys, M. Glikson, I.T. Uysal and C.J. Bareham 257
6. The development of an understanding of the origins of the Sydney and Bowen
Basin gases I J.W. Smith 271
7. Mineral-catalyzed formation of natural gas during coal maturation I C.H.
Bartholomew, S.J. Butala, J.C. Medina, M.L. Lee, T.Q. Taylor and D.B.
Andrus 279

RESERVOIR QUALITY EVALUATION; IN-SITU STRESS STRUCTURE,


HYDROGEOLOGY, MICRO-STRUCTURE
1. The role of in-situ stress in coalbed methane exploration I J. Enever, D. Casey
and M. Backing 297
2. Mechanical and thermal control of cleating and shearing in coal: Examples
from the Alabama coalbed methane fields, USA I J.C. Pashin, R.E. Carroll,
J.R. Hatch and M.B. Goldhaber 305
3. The microstructure of pore space in coals in different rank I A.P. Radlinski
and E.Z. Radlinska 329
4. Coalbed characteristics of the Mist Mountain Formation, Southern Canadian
Cordillera: Effect of shearing and oxidation I S.J. Vessey and R.M. Bustin 367
5. Decrease in desorption intensity of coalbed methane due to hydraulic fracturing
I Z. Weishauptova, J. Medek and J. Nemec 385

METHANE EMISSION TO THE ATMOSPHERE & THEIR MANAGEMENT


I. Coal seam gas emissions from Ostrava-Karvina collieries in the Czech Repub-
lic during mining and after mines closure I G. Takla and Z. Vavrusak 395
2. Countermeasures and researches for prevention of methane emission into the
atmosphere in a Japanese coal mine I K. Ohga, S. Shimada, Higuchi and G.
Deguchi 411

MODELLING COAL SEAM METHANE AND OIL GENERATION IN


HYDROTHERMAL SYSTEMS
1. Modeling the hydrothermal generation of coals and coal seam gas I D.L.
Lopez, M. Cobb, S.D. Golding and M. Glikson 423
2. Simulating the conductive and hydrothermal maturation of coal and coal seam
gas in the Bowen Basin, Australia I M. Cobb, D.L. Lopez, M. Glikson and
S.D. Golding 435
vii

3. Modelling of petroleum formation associated with heat transfer due to hydro-


dynamic processes I R.H. Bruce, M.F. Middleton, P. Holyland, D. Loewenthal
and I. Bruner 449

COAL-SOURCED LIQUID HYDROCARBONS: GENERATION,


ACCUMULATION
1. Floral influences on the petroleum source potential of New Zealand coals I J.
Newman, C.J. Boreham, S.D. Ward, A.P. Murray and A.A. Bal 461
2. The influence of depositional and maturation factors on the three-dimensional
distribution of coal rank indicators and hydrocarbon source potential in the
Gunnedah Basin, New South Wales I L.W. Gurba and C.R. Ward 493
3. The physics and efficiency of petroleum expulsion from coal I J.K. Michelsen
and G. Khavari-Khorasani 517
4. Jurassic coals and carbonaceous mudstones: the oil source of the Junggar and
Turpan-Rami Basins, China I K. Jin, S. Yao, H. Wei and D. Hao 545

NOTES I SHORT PAPERS


1. Examples of the methane exchange between litho-and atmosphere: The coal
bearing Ruhr Basin, Germany I T. Thielemann and R. Littke 555
2. Desorption as a criterion for the estimation of methane content in a coal seam I
J. Medek and Z. Weishauptova 559
3. Grading of reserves and resources of coalbed gas in China I W. Sun, W. Ying,
M. Fan and S. Wang 565
4. Anhydride theory: A new theory of petroleum and coal generation I C.W. Hunt 571
5. Looking back on development history of coalbed methane in China I S.A.
Zhang 581
6. The study of the influence of pressure on coalbed permeability I J. Zhang, J.
Li, Y. Wan and H. Wang 589
PREFACE

Coalbed gas has been considered a hazard since the early 19th century when the first
mine gas explosions occurred in the United States in 1810 and France in 1845. In
eastern Australia methane-related mine disasters occurred late in the 19th century with
hundreds of lives lost in New South Wales, and as recently as 1995 in Queensland's
Bowen Basin. Ventilation and gas drainage technologies are now in practice. However,
coalbed methane recently is becoming more recognized as a potential source of energy;
rather than emitting this gas to the atmosphere during drainage of gassy mines it can be
captured and utilized. Both economic and environmental concerns have sparked this
impetus to capture coalbed methane.

The number of methane utilization projects has increased in the United States in recent
years as a result, to a large extent, of development in technology in methane recovery
from coal seams. Between 1994 and 1997, the number of mines in Alabama, Colorado,
Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia recovering and utilizing methane
increased from 10 to 17. The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that close to
49 billion cubic feet (Bet) of methane was recovered in 1996, meaning that this amount
was not released into the atmosphere. It is estimated that in the same year total emissions
of methane equaled 45.7 Bcf. Other coal mines are being investigated at present, many
ofwhich appear to be promising for the development of cost-effective gas recovery.

Methane from coal is increasingly becoming a substantial contributor to the United


States' natural gas resource base, production having increased at least fivefold since
1990. Although numerous basins have considerable coalbed gas potential, more than 90
percent of the gas produced comes from two basins: the San Juan and the Warrior,
where the current development represents only a fraction of the estimated 675Tcf (19.1
Tm3) of U.S. coalbed methane resources. The San Juan Basin is the most productive in
the world, and accounts for about 80 percent of the entire U.S. coalbed gas production.
In 1992 alone this basin produced 44 Bcf (12.6 Bm3) of gas, with cumulative production
through the end of 1994 exceeding 1 Tcf(28 Bm3).

This special publication on coalbed gas is multidisciplinary in scope and covers a wide
range of aspects from exploration through production, resource calculations, emissions,
and regulatory processes. One part of this volume deals also with qualifying and
quantifying oil generation from coal. Furthermore, quality and quantity of oil and gas
generation from coals as a function of heating mode is reported. New models for oil and
gas generation in coal seams by convective heat transfer through hydrothermal
circulation in basins are presented in this volume for the first time.

We acknowledge the following reviewers for their efforts to improve the papers
included in this volume: John Comer, John Rupp, Colin Ward, Chris Boreham, Stewart
Gillies, Julian Baker, and Sue Golding.

M. Mastalerz and M. Glikson

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