Texas Oil Production Reaches Levels Not Seen Since the 70s

Texas Oil Production Exceeds that of Iraq
U.S. Oil Production

U.S. Oil Production | Click to Enlarge

The “good ol’ days” for the oil and gas industry are back in Texas! The Energy Information Administration (EIA) recently released data showing the state produced just over 3 million b/d of crude oil in April of 2014, reaching production levels not seen in the state since the 70s.

Many Texans remember well the oil bust of the early 80s, when the price of oil fell drastically, and what followed was a blight on the states’ economy. A steady decline in oil production, which began in 1972, and fell sharply after the bust, signaled the state’s oil boom days were likely over for good. But now Texas along with the rest of the U.S. is on track to become the top oil producer in the world by 2015, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA). The EIA said in the month of April, Texas and North Dakota, which encompasses the prolific Bakken Shale play, made up nearly half of U.S. oil production (48%).

The rise in Texas’ oil production is thanks in large part to the tight oil and shale gas revolution in the Eagle Ford, and made possible by advancements in horizontal drilling and fracking technology. The Permian Basin in West Texas, a major oil producing area in the state for years, has also seen an increase in horizontal drilling since the end of 2013, and many of the areas untapped oil reserves are being accessed by the technology.

Read more: Why Horizontal Drilling is Important to Texas Oil Production

Texas Surpasses Iraq’s Oil Production

The EIA’s data is yet another indication of America’s re-emerging prominence as a leader in world-wide oil production. In June of 2014, Iraq’s production fell 400,000 b/d to 2.9 million, due to violence and civil unrest flaring up in the country, according to Bloomberg. That means Texas has likely surpassed Iraq’s oil production, since Texas’ production has increased on a month-to-month basis since 2011. Iraq was rated as the second largest OPEC producer in April at 3.2 million b/d.

Read more at bloomberg.com

Why Horizontal Drilling is Important to Texas Oil Production

Horizontal Drilling Ramps Up in West Texas' Permian Basin and Dominates Eagle Ford Activity
HorizontalDrillingUS

Horizontal Drilling in the U.S. | Click to Enlarge

The tight oil and shale gas revolution has been made possible largely by horizontal drilling and fracking technology. Although the controversial process of fracking tends to dominate the headlines, advancements made in horizontal drilling have allowed operators to precisely access more of the shale rock layer than was thought possible even a decade ago.

As of this writing, 237 rigs in the Eagle Ford are drilling horizontal wells, which accounts for 88% of all rig activity in the play. Without a doubt, horizontal drilling dominates the Eagle Ford play, not to mention the next most significant shale play, the Bakken Shale, where horizontal drilling also reigns supreme. On our sister site, BakkenShale.com, horizontal drilling in our coverage area accounts for nearly 90% of all active rigs.

Horizontal Drilling Ramps Up in the Permian Basin

Although the Eagle Ford is by far the top producer in the state of Texas, it is not the top dog for horizontal drilling. Rather, its the Permian Basin that currently wears that crown. For years, much of the oil produced in the state came from West Texas, and although the spotlight has recently shifted to the Eagle Ford, the Permian appears to be ramping up for a revolution of its own.

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, since the end of 2013, the number of horizontal rigs in the Permian Basin have increased dramatically. From December 27, 2013, to the week ending on May 9, 2014, the number of horizontal, oil-directed rigs in the Permian Basin rose by 63 rigs, which accounts for 50% of the total increase in the United States.

“A change in the horizontal, oil-directed rig count of the scale seen in the Permian indicates a significant rise in activity in its tight oil plays relative to recent developments in other major production areas,” said officials with the EIA .

At the beginning of 2013, both the Eagle Ford Shale and the Bakken Shale, exceeded the Permian Basin in the number of oil-directed horizontal drilling rigs. By the end of 2013, the Permian Basin’s 215 rigs surpassed both the Eagle Ford and Bakken, which at that time had 173 and 164 rigs, respectively. During the first quarter of 2014, the increase in oil-directed horizontal rigs in the Permian Basin was more than four times the combined increase in the Eagle Ford and Williston Basin.

Read more at eia.gov

Escondido Resources Horizontal Eagle Ford Drilling Results – 2011

Escondido Resources II announced well results from the company’s 2011 drilling program in South Texas.  Escondido drilled 17 wells in 2011 with an average IP rate of 7 mmcfd. That is not just Eagle Ford wells. The company has drilled a total of 29 wells since 2009, with 18 in the Escondido formation, 7 targeting the Olmos, and 5 targeting the Eagle Ford Shale. All 17 wells in 2011 were horizontal.  [Read more…]

Horizontal Drilling and Hydraulic Fracturing Brought the Eagle Ford

Anadarko’s drilling manager Mark Sunland was interviewed by MyWestTexas. He talks about new technologies opening up what was traditionally thought to be a source rock. The combination of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing have made the play economic and opened vast domestic resources. Future improvements, such as rotary steerable technology, will only improve the efficiency of shale drilling onshore.  [Read more…]

MENU