Pioneer Natural Resources Eagle Ford Production Up & Costs Down

Pioneer Eagle Ford Production Chart
Pioneer Eagle Ford Production Chart

Pioneer Natural Resources' Eagle Ford production was up to 37,000 boe/d in the first quarter.

That's an increase from 35,000 boe/d in the fourth quarter and a 2012 average of 28,000 boe/d.

Pioneer drilled 37 wells in the quarter and brought 35 of those to production. In total, the company expects to drill 130 wells at a cost of $7-8 million each this year. Those wells will be drilled with just 10 rigs compared to 12 in 2012.

Four out of every five wells will be drilled from centralized pads this year. That's up from just 45% of wells in 2012 and one reason costs continue to fall. Pad drilling saves $600,000-700,000 per well and also saves precious time.

Our three liquids and resource-rich core assets in Texas, the Spraberry vertical, the horizontal Wolfcamp Shale and the Eagle Ford Shale, were the drivers of this significant increase.
— Scott Sheffield, Chairman and CEO

Testing Downspacing & White Sand Proppants

Pioneer continues to test the viability of 70-80 acre downspacing and is even testing 40-acre spacing in areas. The liquids prone areas will likely call for tighter spacing. We should know results from the 70-80 acre spacing tests later in the year.

The company is also expanding the use of white sand proppant. Ceramic proppants have been used in the deeper portions of the play, but the use of white sand can save as much as $700,000 per well. Pioneer estimates it will use cheaper sand in 70% of its Eagle Ford completions in 2013.

A total of 11 central gathering facilities are in place and one more will be added in 2014. The major midstream hurdles faced when the company began developing the play have largely been eliminated.

Don't expect natural gas drilling in the Eagle Ford to pick up at current gas prices. The company indicated it is not going to get around to dry gas acreage even at gas prices of $4.25-4.50.

Read the full press release at

Pioneer Cuts Back Eagle Ford Dry Gas Drilling Again

Pioneer Eagle Ford Update Map
Pioneer Eagle Ford Update Map

Pioneer Natural Resources is cutting back its dry-gas development plans in the Eagle Ford from 15% to just 10% of its budgeted activity. Gas drilling is only going forward at this level to secure leases for when gas prices improve.

The company reported earnings for the second quarter at the end of July and is right on target to meet expectations for the year in South Texas. Highlights from the quarter include:

  • Drilled 34 wells and brought 37 to production
  • Added three central gathering plants to reach a total of 11 in operation
  • Lowered dry-gas activity from 15% to 10% of wells budgeted. Gas drilling is only being utilized to hold acreage by production
  • Expanding the use of White Sand into gas well completions ($700,000 savings)

Pioneer produced approximately 23,000 boe/d in the first quarter, 24,000 boe/d in the second quarter and has provided guidance of 25,000-29,000 boe/d for 2012. Expect the company to realize its biggest production increases in the second half of the year.

Read more about the company's position at our Pioneer Eagle Ford page.

BP - Lewis Joint Venture in Eagle Ford Dry Gas

BP and Lewis Energy reach JV deal across 80,000 acres in Webb County, TX.  Industry representatives report that BP paid Lewis Energy (Lewis Petroleum Properties) $160 million ($4,000 per acre) for a 50% interest in 80,000 acres in the dry gas window of the Eagle Ford Shale.

"BP has made a joint- venture deal with privately held Lewis Energy Group that will expand the British oil giant's position in the U.S. natural gas business and find it entering a fast-emerging field in South Texas, according to a person familiar with the situation." "The deal would be the latest in a string of similar moves by major oil companies to enter or expand in unconventional rock formations in the U.S., where huge amounts of natural gas have been discovered in recent years."

"In December, Exxon Mobil Corp. said it would acquire Fort Worth's XTO Energy in a deal valued at $41 billion. A month later, France's Total agreed to pay $2.3 billion for 25 percent of Chesapeake Energy Corp.'s acreage in the Barnett Shale play in North Texas, and the companies said they may jointly develop acreage in the Eagle Ford Shale and in several Canadian natural gas plays."

Read the full article at