Thursday, December 8, 2011

Preliminary Production Numbers for October, 2011 -- A New Record -- The Bakken, North Dakota, USA

Link here.

The Director's Cut will be out in the next day or two, but apparently, "The production numbers are another jump from the month before. ND  preliminary numbers are 15,130,043 bbls or 488,066 bopd. And that was  only adding 118 producing wells. If the numbers can increase in the  22-24,000 bopd for another 5 months, ND will overtake California for the #3 spot in state production."

Eight (8) New Permits -- The Bakken, North Dakota, USA

Daily activity report, December 8, 2011 --

Operators: Whiting (2), QEP (2), CLR (2), Hess and Murex

Fields: Sanish, Heart Butte, Viking, Pleasant Valley, Larson

Both of Whiting permits are  in its cash cow, the Sanish. Murex is also in the Sanish.

Eight wells released from the confidential list and reported elsewhere; three of these wells were not completed.

Kudlow Talking Head -- Fracking Ban -- From Possibility to Probability

Kudlow had long segment on fracking material found in well water in Wyoming.

Kudlow talking head (video): ban on fracking just went from possibility to probability.

This will take about six months to play out, but watch for a lawsuit and then an injunction putting in a temporary ban on fracking until this issue is sorted out.

Just my humble opinion.

Remember: the administration had no qualms shutting down the gulf destroying the economy of Louisiana. The administration had no qualms shutting down the Keystone XL and all the jobs that would have created.  And I've posted the Obama video (YouTube) on his goal to destroy the coal industry. This is not rocket science.

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EPA - Wyoming Shenanigans


November 14, 2016: cased closed (?). Wyoming DEQ finds no fracking fluids in groundwater I'm so sick of this subject, I want to throw up.

June 19, 2013: the EPA closes the books on this one. The EPA says it will turn over the "investigation" to the state of Wyoming.

January 11, 2012: Comment period extended for the third time; extended almost another year, to September 30, 2013.

December 6, 2012: Encana calls on EPA to abandon Pavillion natural gas well tests. Paraphrasing: "the tests are flawed and the EPA needs to start over. Re-focus."

October 18, 2012: link to OGJ -- USGS did a better job testing the water at Pavillion, WY, than the EPA did -- API.  When you read the story, it sounds just like the Lance Armstrong doping controversy. The USGS did not find some of the substances that the EPA said they found in the water.

October 11, 2012: WSJ story, page A3; essentially a press release by the EPA;

September 27, 2012: Bloomberg story. Encana disputes the interpretation of these findings and this story, at ABC News.

March 9, 2012: EPA to re-test water from the various wells in Wyoming -- Reuters.

January 9, 2012: apparently Encana has had enough of this craziness; Encana is asking EPA to suspend the comment period; asking the EPA clarify its concerns and its data; and then re-open the comment period.

January 1, 2012: EPA-CYA -- Bismarck Tribune

December 27, 2011: Well, well, well, isn't this interesting. It looks like the EPA testing was flawed on so many levels. This is what I wrote as soon as I heard the original story about the EPA results. "There is so much in this short article that does not ring true with regard to fracking, but the timing is remarkable." The Dickinson Press was the first (or among the first) regional paper in the state to publish the EPA story when it broke. It will be interesting to see if The Dickinson Press prints this update.

December 14, 2011: in drips and draps, the truth is coming out.
The fracking at Pavillion involved vertical — not horizontal — wells, and many wells didn’t have the protective casing that’s commonly used to prevent chemicals from leaking into the surrounding environment.

That contrasts with most major shale gas plays across the U.S., where fracking typically occurs in horizontal wells drilled as deep as two or three kilometres underground, well below any aquifers or groundwater supplies.
Even the EPA hedged its bets. To me, it appears EPA was looking for a headline; the EPA folks are a bit like the North Koreans: when they feel ignored they do something to make headlines.

December 10, 2011: Encana agrees -- the science doesn't add up. Exactly what  I said below. I wonder if the EPA administrator was personally aware of what was going on in Wyoming?
Doug Hock a spokesman for Encana, said concerns about the pollution of drinking water "are not borne out by the facts." The EPA's test wells, he noted, were far below the depth of drinking water wells.

"At a depth where you would expect to find hydrocarbons, they found hydrocarbons. In drinking wells, they found no impacts due to oil and gas," he said.

"We've done extensive testing, the state has done extensive testing, and never have we found the effects of oil and gas in these drinking water wells," Hock said.
Original Post
From The Dickinson Press link here.
CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for the first time has implicated fracking — a controversial method of improving the productivity of oil and gas wells — for causing groundwater pollution.

The finding could have a chilling effect in states trying to determine how to regulate the controversial process.
It is not uncommon for hydrocarbons to be found in well water. "Fingerprinting" will reveal these hydrocarbons did not come from fracking.

There is so much in this short article that does not ring true with regard to fracking, but the timing is remarkable.

For a much better report, click here. Also, here in the LA Times.

Obama Supports Regulating Farm Dust

For those who think the Feds would not regulate fracking, consider the issue of regulating farm dust.

Even Democrats realize it is a crazy world when Congress needs to pass a bill to prevent the EPA from doing exactly that: regulating farm dust.

The House overwhelmingly passed the bill which would prevent this debacle.

Interestingly, they say the Senate is unlikely to take up the bill for consideration.

The President has said he would veto it anyway. That speaks volumes: it suggests to me the President would support regulating farm dust.

By the way: regulating farm dust would also apply to all those trucks in western North Dakota drilling the Bakken, not just trucks involved in fracking. There are many, many ways to shut down fracking and the EPA keeps looking for the Achilles heel of the tight shale industry. In chess and military engagements, these are called feints, looking for an opponent's weak point. My hunch is it wouldn't take a lot for the EPA to regulate rural dust but exempt farm equipment.

I guess the good news is this: the bill is now out there for the Senate to act if the EPA goes back on their word to not regulate farm dust. But that's about all the good news there is: the President has said he would support his EPA over his Democrat-controlled Senate.

Six-Stage Frack Resulting in a Huge Bakken Well -- The Bakken, North Dakota, USA

I have limited time and limited resources to check and double check to see if I'm missing something, but if this is accurate as I have posted this, it is very, very remarkable. (This is mostly a "cut and paste" from an earlier post, but important enough to get a stand-alone post.)
  • 19475, 2,503, Whiting, Brookbank State 41-16XH, Sanish, middle Bakken, s10/10; t6/11; cum 76K bo cum 10/11; 6 stages, 96K lbs sand
Again note: stimulated with six (6) stages and almost no proppant; incredible. Sometimes an initial frack fails and the company goes back in and re-fracks. In this case, the well has been on-line since June, the month it was originally fracked, suggesting that they have not gone back in and increased the number of frack stages. 

This well was tested/completed on/about June, 2011, and in less than four months of production is pushing 76,000 bbls of oil cumulative. Incredible. For newbies, the milestone I watch is how fast a well reached 100,000 bbls of oil cumulative. Madison wells often produced for 20 years, sometimes longer, to get to 100,000 bbls. Bakken wells are generally getting to 100,000 within three years, and some are reaching that number much more quickly.

This is where Whiting is putting in density/development/infill wells. There are four producing wells in the immediate area of the Brookbank and a fifth well with a rig on site. Even with that large number of wells, Whiting is nowhere near completely filling in that area. And, remember, only two formations are being targeted: the middle Bakken and the Three Forks/Sanish. Others have opined that there may be additional formations yet to be targeted.

Three Very Nice Wells Recently Reported -- The Bakken, North Dakota, USA

Of the eight (8) most recent wells coming off the confidential list, three were not completed/fracked. Of the five that were completed, three of them were very good wells based on their IPs.  The full list can be viewed here, but these are the three very nice wells recently reported:
  • 20783, 1,388, ERF, Miles 151-94-28D-21H TF, Antelope, Three Forks, s6/11; t9/11; 35K cum 10/11; 24 stages, 2.3 mil lbs sand
  • 20655, 2,217, BEXP, Raymond 17-20 1H, Ragged Butte, middle Bakken, s6/11; t8/11; 34K cum 10/1; 39 stages, 4 mil lbs proppants: 1.5 mil lbs sand; 2.4 mil lbs ceramics
  • 19475, 2,503, Whiting, Brookbank State 41-16XH, Sanish, middle Bakken, s10/10; t6/11; cum 76K bo cum 10/11; 6 stages, 96K lbs sand
The Sanish has always been the cash cow for Whiting; other Whiting Sanish wells this 4th calendar quarter (yet to completed):
Note, that even among Whiting's good Sanish wells, its most recent well, the Brookbank State is another very good well. 

And then look at the well file: stimulated with six (6) stages and almost no proppant; incredible. Sometimes an initial frack fails and the company goes back in and re-fracks. In this case, the well has been on-line since June, the month it was originally fracked, suggesting that they have not gone back in and increased the number of frack stages. 

Now, compare that to the BEXP Raymond well. This is a typical BEXP well: max stages and max proppants including ceramics: 39 stages, 4 mil lbs proppants: 1.5 mil lbs sand; 2.4 mil lbs ceramic. I don't often see a 39-stage frack. BEXP appears to have moved to 36 stages as routine, but now we are starting to see stimulations nearing 40 stages.

Ragged Butte oil field is directly south of Indian Hill. These two fields, Ragged Butte and Indian Hill, are proving to be very good fields. They sit in or very near the bull's-eye of the Bakken that I have been talking about for some time. Both fields are directly south of the river, in north/northwestern McKenzie County. Driving south on US 85 just south of the bridge south of Williston, one can see these two fields. Indian Hill is just north of Ragged Butte.

I have taken many, many drives down US 85 and have always been impressed with the amount of activity in the past year.  There are one or two huge hazardous waste projects on the west side of this highway -- at least they appear to be dry waste projects. The areas were too large for photographs not taken from the air.

Antelope field is also a very, very good field. It is one of several fields in the reservation, perhaps one of the best areas in the Bakken. It is west of the river/lake, just west of fields very, very well known in the Bakken: Reunion Bay, Big Bend, Van Hook.

North Dakota Among Top 15 For Worse Emissions -- Former EPA Official

The Dickinson Press link here.
An environmental advocacy group issued a report Wednesday ranking North Dakota among the nation’s “filthy 15” in emissions of toxic pollutants from coal-burning power plants.

Overall, North Dakota was ranked No. 12 in the report by the Environmental Integrity Project. North Dakota ranked No. 3 for arsenic releases and No. 8 for mercury. Minnesota was not among the 15 states highlighted in the report. 
Some data points: 
  • Has anyone heard of the Environmental Integrity Project? Rhetorical; please don't answer.
  • New Jersey?
  • Minnesota: NIMBY
  • One can always rely on The Dickinson Press to brighten my day; I did not see this report anywhere else
I'm surprised the faux-environmental advocacy group didn't add flaring to the list of toxic pollutants; if they did, I missed it. Sorry.

Nuclear --> oil --> natural gas --> coal --> trees

By the way,  it appears the fEIP posts nationally-oriented news stories at its website and then sends regionally-oriented press releases to friendly "outlets." It is obvious The Dickinson Press has been identified as a friendly "outlet."  The particular website article that relates to the press release above does not include the phrase "Filthy 15." In addition, there are only 12 sites mentioned, and only one of those was in North Dakota. Three were in Pennsylvania. With regard to North Dakota, this press release printed as a news story is a non-story. The executive director of the project was a former high-ranking EPA official.

Dickinson residents are no doubt gasping at this report.