North Dakota Breaks All Time Oil Production Record For 2008
Bakken Output Increases 269%
North Dakota’s produced more oil in 2008 than in any year since commercial production was established in the state in 1951. The state reported production of 62,776,123 bo, up an impressive 39% compared to the 45,121,983 bo extracted a year earlier. 2008 shatters the previous record, which was set in 1984, when the state produced 52,658,396 bo. It appears that North Dakota will be the top oil producer for the first time in the Rocky Mountain Region beating out Wyoming, who has perennially claimed that #1 spot.
This 17.65 mmbo increase compared to the previous year is attributed to the increased drilling and completion activities in the horizontal Bakken that was spurred on by record oil prices. In 2008, the Bakken produced 27,233,329 bo from 881 wells, an increase of 269% as opposed to the 7,382,025 bo from 457 wells that the state recorded in 2007. Mountrail County accounted for 59% of the Bakken produced in the state with the vast majority of it coming from Parshall and Sanish Fields. It’s interesting to point out that in 2008, total spuds for the year was 720, of which 517 of those were for the horizontal Bakken. With official data is still being compiled, according to the RMOJ’s database, Mountrail and Dunn County accounted for about 63% of the Bakken drilling in the state. Although an estimate, and factoring in 640 spacing vs. 1,280 spacing, total horizontal hole drilled (not including vertical) in these two counties for the year is in the neighborhood of around 485 miles.
In another first, the Bakken was the top oil producing formation in the state since 1951, accounting for 43% of the states total. In previous years, the Ordovician Red River was the top producing formation. Now in second place, the Red River produced 17,239,458 bo or about 27% of the states total in 2008.
The top producing company in 2008 continues to be Burlington Resources (BR), who reported production totals of 12,106,151 bo from 163 active wells. 92% of this production is coming from the Ordovician Red River, primarily from the Cedar Creek Anticline in Bowman County where the company is exploiting the horizontal Red River. BR is also active in the Bakken play where they produced just over a million barrels of oil from 33 wells. A year earlier, BR was credited with a yearly total of 12,690,287 bo.
The second largest producer in the state is EOG Resources (EOG), the current king of the Bakken. Jumping up six places from 2007, EOG extracted 8,613,534 bo, and increase of 493% or 7,160,745 bo compared to the 1,452,789 bo produced in 2007. All of EOG’s production is coming from the horizontal Bakken, primarily from Parshall Field in Mountrail County. Latest production figures for this field, which locates in the overall area of 151-155n, 89-91w; reveal that in December, this field yielded 1,398,352 bo from 108 active wells (including confidential wells). The majority of these wells are operated by EOG, which discovered this field in 2006.
Continental Resources (CR) dropped from 2nd place to third place even though their production increased by over 26%. In 2008, CR produced 6,505,653 bo, an increase of 1,358,939 bo as opposed to the 5,146,714 bo produced in 2007. Like BR, 71% of CR’s production is coming from the Red River, while 25% of it is being produced from both the Bakken and to a lesser degree, the Three Forks.
Coming in at #4 is Hess Corp. (Hess). The company extracted 5,490,629 bo for the year, up 1,300,759 bo compared to 2007. For the first time since the company drilled the discovery well in the Williston Basin 58 years ago, Hess produced more oil from the Bakken than the Madison. 2,428,465 bo or 44% of the Hess production came from the Bakken with the remaining coming from the Madison, Devonian, Duperow, Heath, Ordovician, Red River, Sanish, Silurian, Spearfish/Charles, Stonewall, and Deadwood. The bulk of Hess’s production is still coming from Nesson Anticline in Williams and McKenzie counties as opposed to their horizontal Bakken activity in Mountrail, Mclean, Burke and Ward counties.
Remaining in fifth place is for the year is Whiting Oil and Gas (WOG). For 2008, WOG saw its production jump an impressive 69% to 3,895,134 bo compared to the 2,298,580 bo produced a year earlier. 53% or 2,072,973 bo of this total was from the horizontal Bakken, with the majority of it coming from the company’s operations at Sanish Field in Mountrail County.
A quick look at drilling statistics for the state in 2008 show that a total of 720 wells were spud for the year, up from the 407 that spud in 2007. Total permits applied for in 2008 was 946 an increase of about 92% compared to a year earlier. 85% of these permits were for the Bakken.
The following list ranks the top oil producers in the state of North Dakota for the year 2008. We have also included a list showing the top gas producers in the state however it should be noted that the vast majority of the gas produced within North Dakota is casing head gas produced in association with oil production. Also included is a 2008 list showing the rankings of those operators that produced Bakken oil only and a compilation of producing oil and gas formations within the state for the year. Please note that the company rankings for oil and gas and the Bakken do not include confidential wells, skimmed oil, drip gas or other liquids extracted during gas processing.We would also like to thank the staff at the North Dakota Oil and Gas Commission for their patience in putting up with our somewhat picayunish questions and getting us the data that we asked for.
Below is the list of the 2008 top 30 oil producers in ND. The remaining top oil producers as well as lists of the 2008 top gas and Bakken producers in ND are available in the February 27, 2009, edition of The RMOJ.
|Operator-2008-Oil||Oil (BBLS)||Gas (MCF)||Water (BBLS)||# Wells|
|1. BURLINGTON RES. OIL & GAS CO. LP ||12106151||3526433||17743237||164|
|2. EOG RESOURCES, INC.||8613534||3670224||969659||66|
|3. CONTINENTAL RESOURCES, INC.||6505653||18827325||6365514||296|
|4. HESS CORP.||5490629||25116362||20663012||389|
|5. WHITING OIL AND GAS CORP.||3895134||5394685||9268943||244|
|6. ENCORE OPERATING, L.P.||3311878||5001679||26187592||300|
|7. MARATHON OIL CO.||2395410||901776||606949||80|
|8. ST MARY LAND & EXPLORATION CO.||1817305||2917923||6452989||257|
|9. PETRO-HUNT, L.L.C.||1557445||3133156||4313784||157|
|10. MUREX PETROLEUM CORP.||1129486||571471||873595||110|
|11. XTO ENERGY INC.||1047661||1470244||618282||83|
|12. ZENERGY, INC||937186||791865||3608014||96|
|13. BTA OIL PRODUCERS, LLC||746427||2390704||1733888||175|
|14. HUNT OIL CO.||634417||206460||174607||8|
|15. SLAWSON EXPLORATION CO. INC.||515647||124196||376038||25|
|16. SAGEBRUSH RESOURCES, LLC||515346||98596||3797665||103|
|17. CITATION OIL & GAS CORP.||503106||501832||6108233||115|
|18. FIDELITY EXPLORATION & PROD. CO.||496632||2057472||229472||77|
|19. LUFF EXPLORATION CO.||447171||191783||1139549||28|
|2O. EAGLE OPERATING, INC.||348914||299754||4370002||178|
|21. ZARGON OIL (ND) INC.||317825||10990||3626496||67|
|22. PRIMA EXPLORATION, INC.||301879||639027||573010||23|
|23. BRIGHAM OIL & GAS, L.P.||300969||222663||282518||12|
|24. TRUE OIL LLC||295902||1215392||144044||25|
|25. SAMSON RESOURCES CO.||289067||385844||248687||25|
|26. SUMMIT RESOURCES, INC.||288398||236805||2439499||37|
|27. CONOCOPHILLIPS CO.||270285||173845||1248060||5|
|28. ANSCHUTZ EXPLORATION CORP.||252384||117861||114462||23|
|29. WARD-WILLISTON CO.||235758||97111||1894419||131|
|30. WINDSOR ENERGY GROUP, L.L.C.||211142||80173||20565||2|
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