2012 Utica shale production results: Infrastructure in progress; ‘best is yet come’

SALEM, Ohio — As the Ohio Department of Natural Resources released its annual report of well production results May 16, many are getting the feeling that Ohio needs to be patient and build the infrastructure in order to see the true production results of some wells.
There have been 660 horizontal permits issued by the ODNR for drilling the Utica shale since the boom began. As of May 11, 334 wells remained in the permitting stage, which means they haven’t been drilled, and 239 wells were listed as having been drilled but are not in production.
According to the ODNR, production reports were submitted for 87 wells in 2012. Of these, 65 were commercial producing wells, 19 were tested and shut-in (the valves were shut off and production was halted, most likely until pipelines are constructed), and three were dry and abandoned.

There was one application for unitization to the ODNR in 2012. So far there have been 12 in 2013. A unitization order allows oil and gas operators to join mineral owners to create large tracts of land for drilling units.

ODNR Director Jim Zehringer called it an “historic era of oil and gas production in Ohio,” and said there is enormous production potential in Ohio.
He added that production from the Utica shale drilling may surpass conventional oil and gas production as early as 2015.

“The future of the Utica shale looks very bright,” Zehringer said.

Not full year

None of the wells listed in the report produced for the entire year. The ODNR reported that 74 of the wells have produced gas for less than half a year.

Of the 19 wells that have not been placed into commercial production, 17 reported incidental volumes of crude oil and natural gas that were recovered during flow back of hydraulic fracturing fluids.

In 2013, a total of 635,896 barrels of oil and 12.83 MCF of natural gas was produced.
However, ODNR officials pointed out that some wells are choked because the infrastructure is not built to transport the materials to market, so production rates on producing wells could be higher in the future.

Hard to compare sites

The report lists each well by company, production numbers and the days it has been producing. The report also lists the driller, county, well name, the barrels of oil produced, gas produced by million cubic feet (MCF) and the number of days in production.

The ODNR noted the oil produced is much thinner than the oil we are used to; it is more of a condensate form and is worth about 85 percent of the average price of a barrel of oil.

Some companies didn’t report the amount of oil produced by the wells for different reasons, including that some do not have the ability to transport the oil from the well site yet or the amount produced was insignificant.
Here is a recap of some top well sites:

Anadarko E&P Onshore

FREC Guer Spencer A-5H; Guernsey County; 26,420 barrels of oil; 81,644 MCF; 276 days in production.
FREC Guer Spencer A-1H; 13,564; Guernsey County; 13,564 barrels of oil; 41,153 MCF; 293 days in production.
FREC NOBL Brookfield A-3H; Noble County; 38,313 barrels of oil; 193,797 MCF; 292 days in production.
FREC NOBL Sharon A-1H; Noble County; 30,287 barrels of oil; 126,703 MCF; 252 days in production.

Antero Reserve
Appalachian Corp.

Sanford Unit 1H; Noble County, 13,675 barrels of oil; 37,693 MCF; 27 days in production.

Chesapeake Exploration

Burgett 7-15-6 8H-RS; Carroll County (Center Township), 46,914.01 barrels of oil; 332,445 MCF; 206 days in production.
Burgett 7-15-6 6-H; Carroll County (Center Township), 11,759 barrels of oil; 56,364 MCF; 52 days in production.
Shaw 20-14-5 5H; Carroll County (Center Township), 24,313 barrels of oil; 344,387 MCF; 306 days in production.
Bucey 3H; Carroll County (East Township), 5,501.89 barrels of oil; 539,293 MCF; 231 days in production.
Harvey 8H; Carroll County (Washington Township), 6,122 barrels of oil; 322,213 MCF; 295 days in production.
Sanor Farms 23-17-5 3H; Columbiana County, 8,832 barrels of oil; 54,730 MCF; 204 days in production.
Enervest Operating LLC.
Cairns #5H; Carroll County; 20,951 barrels of oil; 92,860 MCF; 120 days in production.

Gulfport Energy Corp.

Wagner 1H; Harrison County; 12,147 barrels of oil; 644,276 MCF; 129 days in production.

Hess Ohio Resources LLC.

Nac Gas Unit B 3H-3; Jefferson County; 27 barrels of oil; 900,322 MCF; 292 days in production.

HG Energy LLC

Whitacre N-2H; Monroe County; 0 barrels of oil; 232,847 MCF; 247 days in production.

PDC Energy LLC

Hickenbottom 1; Belmont County; 0 barrels of oil; 5,370 MCF; 290 days in production.

Rex Energy

Brace Unit 1; Carroll (Washington Township); 12,879 barrels of oil; 159,213 MCF; 119 days in production.

2011 vs. 2012 well results

The Kenneth Buell well 8H in Harrison County was a hot topic after the 2011 results were released.

Here is a look at the well a year later.
The Buell well produced for 341 days in 2012. It produced 9,778 barrels of oil and 1,657,548 MCF of natural gas. In 2011, the ODNR production report shows that 13,472 barrels of oil were produced and 1.52 MCF of natural gas was produced during 198 days in production.
Another well that can be compared is the Neider well in Carroll County. The Neider 3H well produced for 120 days in 2012. It produced 5,043 barrels of oil and 234,428 MCF of natural gas.
In 2011, the well produced for 130 days and the results were 9,444 barrels of oil and 395,290 MCF.
Another well that produced in both 2011 and 2012 was the Calvin Mangun well in Carroll County. In 2012, it produced for 152 days and the results were 7,144 barrels of oil and 239,021 MCF in natural gas.
In 2011, the Calvin Mangun well produced 12,334 barrels of oil and 322,435 MCF of natural gas during its 206 days in production.

About the Author

Kristy Foster Seachrist lives in Columbiana County raising sheep and horses. She earned her degree from Youngstown State University and has worked in both print and broadcast journalism. You can follow her on Twitter at http://twitter.com/fosterk96. More Stories by Kristy Foster Seachrist

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