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Global oil and gas resources and forecast of development
Petroleum geology, geophysics

Authors: Viktor I. YERMOLKIN was born in 1934, graduated from Gubkin Moscow Institute of Petrochemical and Gas Industry in 1957. He is Doctor of Geological and Mineralogical Sciences, Professor of the Department of Theoretical Foundations of Exploration and Prospecting of Oil and Gas at Gubkin Russian State University of Oil and Gas. He is author of 6 textbooks, seven monographs and over 150 scientific publications. E-mail: viktor-ermolkin@yandex.ru
Vladimir I. VYSOTSKY is candidate of geological and mineralogical sciences, professor, deputy General Director of JSC “VNIIzarubezhgeoloogy”, for oil and gas. He has more than 50 scientific publications. E-mail: vlad.vysotsky@vzg.ru

Abstract: The article assesses the global oil and gas reserves and traces a clear trend towards their increase. According to the latest assessment in 2011 recoverable oil reserves (including natural gas liquids) account for 558 billion tons. Compared with an earlier estimate they increased by nearly four billion tons, mainly due to the identification of a new petroleum system in the subsalt sediments in ultra deep water continental margin of south-eastern Brazil.
Due to the discoveries of new plays in Turkmenistan, East Mediterranean, in deep water and ultra deep-water areas of the Atlantic and Indian Oceans the world’s natural gas resources have significantly increased.
To predict the possible levels of production three main indicators were used — the magnitude of initial reserves, degree of their exploration and depletion. The countries that have passed the peak production level of hydrocarbons were selected as benchmark ones.
The use of these indices allows predicting the highest level of world production of conventional oil at 4.5 billion tons and that of gas at 5, 7 trillion m3.

Index UDK: 553.04

Keywords: oil and gas reserves, production of hydrocarbons, forecast of level of hydrocarbon production