The Eagle Ford Shale drilling rig count settled at 245 units running this past week. La Salle County still leads with 33 rigs running.
Judging by announcements from operators, we should expect to see the rig count decline throughout 2013. Operators have dropped the average drilling time from 33 days to just 16 days currently. That would indicate the same number of wells could be drilled with less than half the number of rigs that were active at the peak (260+). To date, smaller operators have stepped in and increased their drilling efforts as the largest players have dropped rigs. We'll see more of the same in 2013, but I suspect we'll see a rig count closer to 200 than 250 in the coming months.
The biggest announcement of the week came from Net Midstream. The company plans to build a 124-mile, 42-inch natural gas pipeline from the Agua Dulce Hub in Nueces County to the border near Rio Grande City in Starr County. The pipeline will potentially export up to 2.1 Bcf/d, which would more than double current exports to Mexico. Read more in the article Net Midstream Plans Eagle Ford Pipeline to Mexico.
Eagle Ford Oil & Gas Rigs
[ic-r]The natural gas rig count was 28 this past week. That's one above the Eagle Ford record low set last week. Natural gas prices traded up during the week to $3.47/mmbtu on Friday afternoon. Colder weather and more recent outages at nuclear plants have helped support natural gas prices.
The oil rig count fell three to 216 running in the area. WTI crude futures traded down on the week to a little more than $90 per barrel. Eagle Ford crude prices traded at $101.12/bbl on the 28th of February. Eagle Ford light crude and condensate in the area traded at $88.50 and $87.50, respectively.
There are 201 horizontal rigs running in the region. Ten rigs in Webb County were reclassified this week from horizontal to directional. That change almost accounts for the entire drop in horizontal drilling this past week.. An injection well is being drilled in Karnes County.
La Salle County leads development with 33 rigs running. DeWitt (26), Gonzales (25), Karnes (25), Webb (25), McMullen (24), Dimmit (21), Live Oak (15), Atascosa (9), Leon (7), Wilson (7) and Lavaca (5) round out the top counties in the region.
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Eagle Ford Rig Count by Operator
What is the Rig Count?
The Eagle Ford Shale Rig Count is an index of the total number of oil & gas drilling rigs running across a 30 county area in South Texas. The South Texas rigs referred to in this article are for ALL drilling reported by SmithBits and not solely wells targeting the Eagle Ford formation. All land rigs and onshore rig data shown here are based upon industry estimates provided by the Baker Hughes Rig Count and/or Smith Service Co's (Schlumberger) Smith Rig Count.