Permian – update through March 2019
07 / 04 / 2019
These interactive presentations contain the latest oil & gas production data from all 21,384 horizontal wells in the Permian (Texas & New Mexico) that started producing from 2008/2009 onward, through March 2019.
Oil production from horizontal wells in the Permian set another record in March, at over 3.2 million bo/d, even before upward revisions. As the blue areas indicate, in March more than 2/3rd of total production came from wells that began production since 2018. Gas production also set a new record at close to 11 Bcf/d (switch “Product” to gas), although not all of it is wanted due to sometimes negative pricing.
As the “Well quality” tab reveals, initial performance has increased since 2016, but nowhere near the gains seen in the 2013-2016 time frame. This also doesn’t take into account that laterals kept increasing, as did proppant loadings.
The biggest change was in the number of well completions; in 2018, on average more than 400 horizontal wells came online each month, versus less than 200 in 2016.
The final dashboard, “Top operators”, displays the production history of the 5 largest operators. They all set new output records in 2019.
The ‘Advanced Insights’ presentation is displayed below:
This “Ultimate recovery” overview shows the average production rate for these wells, plotted against their cumulative recovery. Wells are grouped by the year in which production started.
The 2,254 horizontal wells that started production in 2016 have so far recovered the most oil, on average: 200 thousand barrels of oil. They are still producing at an average rate just north of 100 bo/d, and they may recover another 200 thousand barrels before they are down to 20 bo/d (extrapolate the curve to arrive at roughly this number).
The following screenshot (from our advanced analytics service) shows how initial well productivity has evolved in the 6 top-producing counties in the Permian.
Click on the image to see a high-res version of it. The graph shows the average oil recovery in the first year on production, by county and production start date. Increases in lateral length and proppant use greatly boosted initial productivity in the past 6 years. The best well performance is now seen in Midland and Lea. Interestingly, performance dropped somewhat in Reeves County in the last year.
The WSJ recently published 2 articles about the Permian, for which they also found use in our analytics service (behind paywall):
- A Leader of America’s Fracking Boom Has Second Thoughts (last week)
- A Fracking Experiment Fails to Pump as Predicted (today)
Later this month, we will be at the URTeC in Denver, from July 22nd until the 24th. Drop by our booth, #951, if you are in the area, for a chat and a personalized demo!
Early next week we will have a post on the Eagle Ford, followed by an update on all covered states in the US.
Production data is subject to revisions.
Note that a significant portion of production in the Permian comes from vertical wells and/or wells that started production before 2008, which are excluded from these presentations.
For these presentations, I used data gathered from the following sources:
- Texas RRC. Oil production is estimated for individual wells, based on a number of sources, such as lease & pending production data, well completion & inactivity reports, regular well tests, and oil proration data.
- OCD in New Mexico. Individual well production data is provided.
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.