Friday, February 1, 2019

COP's 4Q18 Earnings Call -- As It Pertains To The Bakken

For newbies: in the Bakken, the "proxy" for COP is BR. BR is the operator for COP in the Bakken. And, no, BR is not a reference to the cold weather in North Dakota. It is "shorthand" for Burlington Resources. 

Note: when I first started the blog some twelve years ago (the first two years of posts were deleted in a fit of insanity -- but that's another story) -- when I first started the blog some twelve years ago, COP/BR competed for bragging rights as the biggest producer. I haven't seen those rankings in the last year or so, but the top producers in North Dakota fluctuate among: COP/BR; Whiting, CLR. Other operators of note: MRO, WPX, EOG.

Quotes from the transcript:

Q&A, from Paul Cheng:
Just curious that it seems like you still have running room in the Eagle Ford and probably -- I knew it would be less --  than in Bakken -- I presume. Based on what you see today, I don't know whether, you can actually, you are saying that, oh, this is what is planned. Is the plateau one way going to be on those two basins? And once you get there and how fast you can get there, and once you get there, what kind of rig program you need to sustain in and how long that you can sustain at that peak production?
Response, from Ryan Lance:
In fact Bakken had an outstanding year into 2018. We reached some plateau and suggested that to the marketplace and we outperformed in 2018 and we see some similar opportunities there as we go forward. Matt can maybe provide a little bit extra color for you there.
And, from Matt Fox:
We were running six rigs in the Eagle Ford. We actually dropped a rig at the beginning of the year in Eagle Ford to optimize the ratio of our rigs to completion crews.
And we're running three in the Bakken and two in the Permian. But if we run those rigs continuously, we'd ultimately reach a plateau and we'd be able to hold that plateau for well over a decade, maybe two decades. In the Bakken we, as Ryan said, we thought we were at plateau, but we've had some improved results from our drilling and completions there and we had more partner-operated activity. And so, we're now at higher rate than we anticipated and that can probably be sustained close to that rate for a decade and more. And then of course, in the Permian, we're very early in the life cycle there, so that's several years of growth ahead of it before it reaches a plateau.
Regarding reserves, from Matt Fox:
... we're about 50% booked in the Bakken, 20% in the Eagle Ford, less than 15% booked in the Permian and less than 1% booked in the Montney. So there's a long period ahead of us of continuing to add SEC reserves as we work through this resource base.
Back to the "plateau" concern, from Matt Fox:
So I would say Scott, in the Bakken, we were essentially at plateau. That is not our ambition to grow Bakken further. We can sustain level around where we are just now for a long time. We're used to running two or three rigs and we're comfortable with that in the Bakken.
Emphasis moving from IPs to EUR, again Matt Fox:
So Vintage 5 really isn't focused on trying to improve IP.
It's really focused on trying to improve recovery factor. The big increases in commercial production that we've disclosed from Vintage 1 through Vintage 4 is really not what we are targeting here. This is a more fundamental improvement in the EUR across any given dropped volume. So that's what Vintage 5 is about.
That's why it's going to take several months after these wells were brought online to truly understand how the type curve is evolving and how interference with other wells is behaving. And so, it will have a different characteristic of improvement than Vintage 1 through Vintage 4. So far across the rest of our plays, Bakken, Permian and Montney, we're really implementing completion techniques similar to Vintage 4. Just now we're testing Vintage 5 in the Eagle Ford and a similar test in the Permian also. 

No comments:

Post a Comment