Permian – update until June 2016

This interactive presentation contains the latest oil & gas production data from 9796 selected horizontal wells in the Permian (Texas & New Mexico) until June.

There appears a small drop in oil production in Q2, but as there are likely to be some upward Texas revisions over time, I expect that we’ll eventually see a steady or somewhat increasing production in this time frame.

The EIA reports a much larger amount of oil production from the Permian in its Drilling Productivity report, than I do here. The reason for this difference is that the EIA also counts production from a significant number of vertical wells there (many of which are fracked), while I only report horizontal wells. I only report these, to be able to make better apple-to-apple comparisons possible with horizontal well productivity in other basins.

In the “Well quality” tab, you can see the well production profiles, grouped & averaged by the quarter in which they started production. This shows clearly the long-term trend of ongoing well productivity improvements in the Permian, especially in the initial 2 years on production.

This average initial well productivity is now basically on par with the Bakken. Bakken wells however still display smaller decline rates after this initial period (and typically do still around 50 bo/d by year 5, which Permian wells currently don’t yet seem to achieve). Gas ratios are much higher in the Permian, and gas production can be seen by selecting “gas” as the product. This comparison omits many different well economics factors.

I expect to have another update on all the 8 US states I cover on Thursday (Oct 6th).

Production data is subject to revisions, especially for the last few months in Texas. For this presentation, I used data gathered from the following sources:

  • Texas RRC. I’ve estimated individual well production from well status & lease production data, as these are otherwise not provided. Because of these estimations, I recommend looking at larger samples (>50 wells) before drawing conclusions. About 6% of the horizontal Permian wells in Texas are excluded, as these were mixed with too many vertical wells on a lease, making reasonable well profile estimations impossible. I’ve no spud or plugging information on wells & DUCs in Texas, so these statuses are unavailable in the “Well status” tab.
  • OCD in New Mexico. Accurate individual well production data is available.


The above presentation has 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, and include or exclude categories.
  • 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.