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Our estimated processing time for this application is 40 business days. See our timeline spreadsheet for updates.

Purpose of the Application

Companies may apply for enhanced recovery (ER) for a number of reasons. They might want to maximize their ultimate recovery or alter their reservoir fluid consistency or composition to promote resource flow to producers.

ER involves injecting fluid into a hydrocarbon reservoir to

  • supplement or maintain reservoir energy (pressure),
  • enhance the sweep efficiency of hydrocarbons to production wells, or
  • alter the state of the reservoir fluids in order to enhance hydrocarbon flow.

Process Checklist

Submit an Application
To apply, companies must submit the following:

Before submitting a Directive 065 application, a company must drill its well locations for ER injection. Injection operations cannot begin until the AER has confirmed in writing that the wells meet Directive 051 requirements.

Companies must submit their applications through our Digital Data Submission (DDS) system. We will register each application and assign a reference number.

By submitting an application, the company accepts that its information is no longer confidential.

Review Process

Please note that additional approvals from the AER or other governmental agencies may be required.

Maximum Wellhead Injection Pressure

Our MWHIP review involves assessing the step-rate injectivity, or equivalent tests, which establish the formation fracture propagation pressure. If no injectivity test data are provided, we assess the MWHIP from the default table on the basis of the true vertical depth (TVD) of the perforation top of the proposed injection well interval.

A scheme holder may also apply to have the MWHIP assessed based on 8 × TVD of the perforation top of the proposed injection well interval, where the formation top is deeper than 400 metres. We reserve the right to revert to the default table if the base MWHIP of 8 × TVD is deemed to pose a risk to operations in an area or to the environment.

  1. We share all applications on our Public Notice of Application page to encourage public participation in the approval process.
  2. Anyone who believes they may be directly and adversely affected by an application can file a statement of concern (SOC). If we receive an SOC, it may take us longer to process the application.
  3. We will assign the application to a subject matter expert for initial review. If information is missing (i.e., the application is not complete and Directive 065 requirements are missing), we will close the application. Otherwise, we will proceed with a full technical review. Our review considers
    • whether the applicant has fulfilled safety requirements in Directive 065, specifically
      • notifying licensees of all wells (including abandoned wells) in the applied-for approval area and the area within a quarter section of the applied-for area;
      • in the case of an ER amendment that includes proposed injectors, notifying licensees of all wells, including licensees of abandoned wells within 800 metres of the proposed injector; and
      • notifying holders of adjacent ER schemes if voidage replacement conditions are to be amended;
    • whether the Crown has been sent a letter of indemnification as it pertains to the proposed disposal activities, if on Freehold lands;
    • whether the proposed disposal fluids include acid gases or H2S (to comply with Directive 071).Where acid gas or H2S content is less than 100 parts per million, the applicant may only be asked to confirm the existence of an up-to-date emergency response plan;
    • whether the proposed injection fluids are suitable for maximizing hydrocarbon recovery; and
    • whether offset wellbores have been reviewed for potential high-risk hydraulic isolation deficiencies;

Our Review also considers

  • the source of the injection fluids and sufficiency of the source;
  • the reservoir rock type, quality, and continuity (in some cases);
  • the proposed ER scheme area and the underlying drilling spacing unit in the area and formation;
  • the applicant’s reservoir fluid volumetric estimates and our database estimates;
  • the reservoir fluid pressure, volume, and temperature (PVT) characterization;
  • the reservoir pressure depletion trend from production initiation and the effect of fluid injection on this, if ER has already been implemented;
  • the effect of reservoir energy depletion on production performance trends and the effect of fluid injection on this;
  • the list of wells and their individual status in the pool and the list of wells that will be in or are in the proposed ER scheme area;
  • the scheme holder’s record of compliance with approval conditions;
  • the performance of the scheme in meeting the original hydrocarbon recovery estimates is assessed while considering an application to terminate a scheme; and
  • the maximum wellhead injection pressure (MWHIP) for each proposed injection. See below for more information.
  1. We may request additional information (through a supplemental information request) to complete our technical review.
  2. We will decide to approve, close, or deny the application. If we close it, the applicant may reapply without prejudice. If we deny it, the applicant can file an appeal through our appeal process.
  3. We will provide the applicant with a link to the letter with our decision, which is accessible through the Integrated Application Registry. We will also share our decision on our Publication of Decision page.