Marcellus (PA) & Utica (OH) - update through September 2017

This interactive presentation contains the latest gas (and a little oil) production data from all 9,764 horizontal wells in Pennsylvania and Ohio since 2010, through September. This data includes the production numbers just released by Ohio for Q3 2017.

Gas production from these unconventional wells reached a new high in September, just below 20 Bcf/d. Initial productivity increased a lot over the past year. That explains why the 787 wells that started production in first 9 months of 2017 are in September at an average production rate of about 50% higher compared with the 733 wells that started in the same period last year.

If you look at the “Well quality” tab, you can see that peak rates have consistently grown over the past 7 years, and are now about 3-fold compared with wells starting in 2010. However, the declines of the 2016/2017 vintages following this peak rate are also sharper, and they appear to be closing in on the production profiles of the 2014/2015 wells.

The status of all these wells can be seen in the “Well status” tab. The ‘drilled, but uncompleted’ well inventory is up by about 10% since a year ago, as is visible in the top chart.

The ‘Advanced Insights’ presentation is displayed below:



This “Ultimate Return” overview shows the relationship between gas production rates, and cumulative gas production, averaged for all horizontal wells that started production in a certain year. For more recent, and granular data, you can switch the “Show wells by” selection to quarter or month.

In the 2nd tab (“Cumulative production ranking”) the cumulative production of all this wells is shown. Twelve wells in this region have now each produced more than 15 Bcf of natural gas cumulatively.

The 4th tab (“Productivity ranking”) reveals that of the major operators with at least 100 wells, Cabot and Rice are well above the others as measured by average cumulative production in the first 2 years.

Coming Friday or Saturday I plan to have a new post on the Permian with data through October, followed by one on the Eagle Ford next week.

You can follow me here on Twitter.

Production data is subject to revisions. For this presentation, I used data gathered from the following sources:

  • Ohio Department of Natural Resources
  • Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection



The above presentations have many interactive features:

  • You can click through the blocks on the top to see the slides.
  • Each slide has filters that can be set, e.g. to select individual or groups of operators. You can first click “all” to deselect all items. You have to click the “apply” button at the bottom to enforce the changes. After that, click anywhere on the presentation.
  • Tooltips are shown by just hovering the mouse over parts of the presentation.
  • You can move the map around, and zoom in/out.
  • By clicking on the legend you can highlight selected items.
  • Note that filters have to be set for each tab separately.
  • The operator who currently owns the well is designated by “operator (current)”. The operator who operated a well in a past month is designated by “operator (actual)”. This distinction is useful when the ownership of a well changed over time.
  • If you have any questions on how to use the interactivity, or how to analyze specific questions, please don’t hesitate to ask.


  • Coffeeguyzz says:

    I thank you again for all the time and effort you put into this site.

    As one who has tracked the “shale” developments since the early (2008) days of the Bakken, and became a serious student of the Appalachian Basin several years back, I highly recommend downloading and studying the report on NGLs just released by the DOE.
    The 45 page pdf – titled “Natural Gas Liquids Primer” – intros what NGLs are and why they are important.
    It goes on to describe the present and future status of Appalachian resources and infrastructure.
    This piece is informative and can be used ongoing as reference material.

    Picture the steel industry with tangible, manufacturing material.
    Now picture the coal industry, the main fuel for decades to generate electricity.
    Combine these two as methane now produces – via CCGT plants – the cheapest electricity anywhere (PJM wholesale electricity price is normally low $20s/Mwh. Compare with other regions around the world).

    The feedstock emanating from NGLs will also be the cheapest in the world.

    Appalachia Rising.

    1. Enno says:


      Thank you for the kind words, and the suggested reading material. I have downloaded it, and will read it in the coming days.

      Merry Christmas to you, and all supporters of ShaleProfile!


  • Nuassembly says:

    happy new year, Enno and Everyone here for or against shale!
    First, to answer Enno’s question if one could find similar database about shale gas wells in China — there is no such database open to the public, and the numbers of producing wells are still less than 500s. But they are growing fast, and this year (2018) it will be over 700 wells and will account for more than 10% of China’s natural gas production. There are quite some news reports one could collect through search and also from scientific and engineering journals. The numbers of the highly productive Fuling wells seem to indicate it is close to the average of top 30~50% Marcellus wells. Experts in oil and gas industries are continuing being shocked at the numbers, as the average EUR is already more than 2 ~3 times their original estimates.

    I want to further share some of my thoughts on the EUR numbers of shale gas.
    So far, the shale gas wells’ production results shown here, in particular the Marcellus wells, have exceeded the expectations of most people in terms of EUR per square mile. There are two major issues to be noted here:
    1. The EUR as well as original gas in place (OGIP) per square mile for Marcellus core is just as good as some of the best conventional resources. The ultra-high EURs might not be fatancies by E&Ps, but rather real. For example, I am looking at 30% recovery and OGIP of Marcellus is close to 4BCM per square kilometers (this is based on PA NE core acreage where Cabot and CHK is), while the largest gas reserve in the world, PARS, owned by Iran and Qatar, has OGIP of 5.2 BCM per square kilometers.

    2. The OGIP is so large that it could not be explained by the current shale gas generation and storage model. The amount of gas generated based on the OGIP and TOC in place seems to indicate each gram of TOC needs to generate over 500~600mg of gas. The highest ever reported gas generation is only 300~400mg of gas for each gram of TOC, and most others is under 200mg of gas. This discrepancy seems to indicate that gas should be generated elsewhere and or other thermogenic processes might be responsible for such large generation numbers.

    The above two issues are something that “we don’t know we don’t know” or “we don’t know we (Enno) just already know”. They are totally against the predictions by shale gas bashers who predicted that shale gas could in noway compete with conventional gases.

    1. Enno says:

      Thanks Nuassembly, a happy new year to you too!

      Also appreciate the info on China. A pity to hear about the production data in China (although it is what I would expect).

  • Greg Hladun says:

    Hi Enno. I found my solution. I was looking at Marcellus + Utica last time. I’m OK. Thanks.


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