Several U.S. states show increases

Rising Production Not Limited to the Big Two

Source for the attached graphics: U.S. Energy Information Administration, Petroleum Supply Monthly.
Source for the attached graphics: U.S. Energy Information Administration, Petroleum Supply Monthly.

Texas and North Dakota may get a lot of the headlines, but they clearly aren’t the only boom states defining today’s energy dynamics, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

Estimates in EIA’s Petroleum Supply Monthly report released in late May show onshore oil production in the lower 48 states, including crude oil and lease condensate, rose more than two million barrels per day, or 64 percent, from February 2010 to February 2013.

In those years, production more than doubled in Texas and nearly tripled in North Dakota, spurring a lot of industry and media attention, the report noted.

“There are other states where increases are noteworthy,” the report said. “Five western states in particular – Oklahoma, New Mexico, Wyoming, Colorado and Utah – account for 15 percent of the increase. Production in each of these states increased between 23 percent and 64 percent over the same three years.”

The EIA, which is part of the U.S. Department of Energy, attributed the rise in onshore production to increased productivity from oil-bearing, low-permeability rocks.

Horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing of low-permeability rocks were fueling the new productivity, the EIA said.

The report excluded production from federal Gulf of Mexico and federal Pacific from its Lower 48 figures.

While the Eagle Ford formation and Permian Basin in Texas and Williston Basin in North Dakota outpaced other regions, “gains in the other Lower 48 states add up to roughly 320,000 bbl/d of production over the past three years,” the report stated. Of that, 290,000 bbl/d was produced in the five states mentioned above.

Oklahoma and New Mexico’s combined crude oil production averaged more than 530,000 bbl/d in February, about the same as California, the fourth-largest producing state after Texas, North Dakota and Alaska.

“Oklahoma and New Mexico’s gains in production, up 51 percent and 46 percent, respectively, compared with February 2010, are primarily from the Anadarko and Permian Basins,” the report said.

In Colorado, production increased 64 percent during the three-year period. Wyoming saw a 23 percent increase.

Busy basins in those states are the Powder River, Greater Green River and Denver.

The recently discovered Covenant Field in the central Utah thrust belt ­– plus continued production from the Uinta and Paradox basins – boosted Utah’s output by 45 percent, the EIA said.

“In many fields, in basins such as the Permian, Uinta and Powder River, enhanced oil recovery techniques such as CO2 injection are also boosting production from conventional reservoirs,” the report said.

In its short-term energy outlook, published in April, the EIA report said U.S. crude oil production is expected to “grow rapidly” through 2016. The EIA said it expects U.S. crude oil production to go from an average of 6.5 million barrels per day in 2011 to 7.9 million bpd next year.

EIA collects, analyzes and disseminates energy information to aid policymaking, markets and public understanding of energy and its interaction with the economy and the environment. Its programs cover data on petroleum, natural gas, coal, electric, renewable and nuclear energy.

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