North Dakota – update through April 2017

This interactive presentation contains the latest oil & gas production data from all 12409 horizontal wells in North Dakota that started production since 2005, through April 2017.

Oil production in April rose with 2.5% over the previous month (1,051 kbo/d vs 1,026 kbo/d) . This was also the first time since almost 2 years that production was higher than a year earlier. Gas production increased with more than 5% to 1.8 Bcf/d, setting a new record in North Dakota. In April 68 new wells started production, vs 56 in March.

In the “Well quality” tab, the production profiles of all these wells can be seen. This time, I’ve preselected a linear axis scale, instead of semi-logarithmic, in order to highlight how initial production rates have increased in recent years. The initial production peaks have been pushed higher, and far more oil is recovered in the first year on production. The declines after the peak are also sharper, and after about 2 years, the impact of these improvements on the production rates has mostly dissipated.

The last tab (“Top operators”) shows the total production and location of the 5 largest operators. EOG, while very strong in the Eagle Ford, is at the bottom of this list in the Bakken. It has increased production in recent months, but this was all due to the completion of already drilled wells. It hasn’t drilled any new wells in 2017 so far (this can be seen in the “Well status” overview, if you select EOG as the operator).


The ‘Advanced Insights’ presentation is displayed below:



This “Ultimate recovery” overview shows how all these horizontal wells are heading towards their ultimate oil or gas recovery.

Since the 2nd half of 2015, fewer wells are started (shown by the thinner lines, and in the tooltips), but the average initial performance has gone up.

The last two tabs in the presentation show how both the gas / oil ratio, and the water / oil ratio, are slowly moving higher.

By Friday I expect to have another post on all covered states in the US. Next week I’ll have another close look at the Marcellus & Utica.

For these presentations, I used data gathered from the following sources:

  • DMR of North Dakota. These presentations only show the production from horizontal wells; a small amount (about 30 kbo/d)  is produced from conventional vertical wells.



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.