#398. Important Facts About Drilling in North Dakota

Posted on | The Agurban
Important Facts About Drilling in North Dakota

We have shared with you many Agurbans about the shale gas boom occurring in the United States. This week, we want to pass along some facts we have learned about the drilling taking place in the Bakken and Three Forks formations in North Dakota:

  • As of the end of May 2012, state statistics show a record 217 rigs drilling in North Dakota, with 95A% of those in the Bakken and Three Forks formations in western North Dakota. The number of wells awaiting hydraulic fracturing services stands at 248.
  • State officials say a typical well drilled in the rich Bakken and Three Forks formations will produce about 540,000 barrels of oil over its 29-year lifespan. A horizontal well in the formations cost an average of $7.9 million to drill and complete, and according to the State Department of Mineral Resources, will generate more than $20 million in net profit over its lifetime and pay more than $4.5 million in taxes. The average well also will pay about $7.5 million in royalties to its mineral owners.
  • It is estimated that there are between 27 billion and 45 billion barrels of recoverable oil in the Bakken and associated formations. That’s substantially more than estimated just two years ago, and more than six times the amount the Geological Survey estimated six years ago.
  • North Dakota’s top oil regulator says the state could double its oil production by 2015 to more than 1 million barrels daily, putting it on par with Texas. North Dakota has gone from the nation’s ninth-biggest oil producer in 2006 to No. 2 this year, trailing only Texas.
  • At the recent Williston Basin Petroleum Conference and Expo, with help from the North Dakota Petroleum Council, the following statistics were released:
    • 4,053 registrants from 47 states, 7 provinces, and 9 countries
    • Top five states/provinces represented were North Dakota, Colorado, Texas, Minnesota, and Alberta
    • Exhibit space sold out within 17 minutes!
As we have noted in the past, we expect this sector of the economy to continue to grow. This is vitally important to everyone who uses energy!