Effect of Hydrocarbon Production and Depressurization on Subsidence and Possible Fault Reactivation: Port Acres-Port Arthur Field Area, Southeast, Texas

Access full-text files



Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title



Subsidence has been extensive in the coastal area of southeast Texas. Despite enormous hydrocarbon production in the area, however, most subsidence has been attributed more to regional shallow groundwater withdrawal than to hydrocarbon production. The impact of hydrocarbon production on subsidence can be accurately quantified only where the effects of groundwater withdrawal are minimal. The Port Acres and Port Arthur field area satisfies this requirement.

More than 380 Bcf of gas has been produced from the Port Acres and Port Arthur field area. Pressure in the Hackberry reservoir declined from an original 9,000 psi to less than 3,000 psi by the 1970s, then to less than 2,000 psi by the 1980s. The pressure drop from 9,000 to 1,000 psi could produce a maximum subsidence of 6 percent at reservoir depth. Assuming an average gas column of 50 to 120 ft, estimated compaction of the Hackberry reservoir is 2 to 5 ft (0.61 to 1.63 m), which is consistent with reported surface subsidence.


LCSH Subject Headings