Thursday, June 27, 2013

The New Science Of Fracking

Bloomberg is reporting.
Halliburton, the world’s largest provider of fracking services, is working on cataloging the combination of sounds that signal the perfect frack: an explosion, cracking rock, and eventually the gurgle of hydrocarbons seeping into the well bore, said Glenn McColpin, director of reservoir monitoring at Halliburton’s Houston-based Pinnacle unit. A bad frack means the rock didn’t crack as much as it could have.
When perfected, a computer will convert the sounds to a graph that will show how deeply and thoroughly cracks penetrate the rock surrounding the well, indicating the success of each frack stage. The longer and more numerous the cracks, the more oil and gas will flow.
One fracking stage can cost about $100,000 and a typical well now will have about 15 stages, said Alex Robart, principal at PacWest. The effectiveness of each stage varies wildly. The industry generally subscribes to the 80-20 rule, meaning 80 percent of North American production comes from about 20 percent of the fracking stages, he said. 
Great article. Huge thanks to Don for sending another great link. 

"...a typical well now ...  has15 stages ..." ----- That must be the wells on the East Coast, in the Marcellus. Out west where real men (and real women) do real fracking, the typical well has 30+ stages. Whoohoo.

Random Look At Some Nice Wells In An Unexpected Area -- One Huge Day In The Bakken

Today Samson Resources was issued six permits for oil and gas wells in Ambrose oil field, far northwest corner of North Dakota:
  • 25876, 267, Resource Energy CAN-AM LLC/Samson Resources, Bel Air 2314-5H, t4/14; cum 83K 11/18;
  • 25877, 591, Resource Energy CAN-AM LLC/Samson Resources, Bel Air 2314-7H, t4/14; cum 120K 11/18;
  • 25878, 214, Resource Energy CAN-AM LLC/Samson Resources, Comet 2635-5H, t4/14; cum 57K 11/18;
  • 25879, 277, Resource Energy CAN-AM LLC/Samson Resources, Comet 2635-7H, t4/14; cum 106K 11/18;
  • 25880, PNC, Resource Energy CAN-AM LLC/Samson Resources, Bel Air 2314-6H,
  • 25881, PNC, Resource Energy CAN-AM LLC/Samson Resources, Comet 2635-6H,
An astute reader remembered several other Samson Resources wells in the same general area:
  • 20837, AB/725, Samson Resources, Thomte 8-5-163-99H, Ambrose,  t1/12; cum 258K 4/17; off line as of 3/17;
  • 23831, PNC, Samson Resources, Thomte 0508-7TFH,
  • 23829, 266, Resource Energy CAN-AM LLC/Samson Resources, Thomte 0508-6TFH, t5/13; cum 104K 11/18;
  • 23590, 775, Resource Energy CAN-AM LLC/Samson Resources, Thomte 0508-3H, t3/13; cum 180K 11/18;
  • 23588, 489, Resource Energy CAN-AM LLC/Samson Resources, Thomte 0508-2TFH, t4/13; cum 144K 11/18;
Those are some incredible wells in a very unexpected area of the Williston Basin Bakken. I'm impressed. That's 29,000 bbls in just the first month or so for that one well; and almost 200,000 bbls in less than 18 months for the other well.

A huge "thank you" to the reader for spotting this. Very, very interesting.

Looking For Love In All The Wrong Places, Johnny Lee

By the way, I happened to catch this song while driving cross country. I had forgotten how I used to compare some female country western singers with angels:

Half The Way, Crystal Gayle

Did I Miss Something?

President O'Bama establishes a White House Council on Native American Affairs to promote a healthier relationship among the United States and tribal governments.

Where the heck did this come from? I'm assuming the "George Custer" transcripts from 1876 were just declassified by the NSA and sent up to the White House.

When I see this, I'm reminded of other KRP.


Random Note -- The Significance Of Zenergy's Omlid Well

I hope everyone sees the significance of Zenergy's Omlid well today; dove-tailing with Mike Filloon's article today; and then, comments by Lynn Helms a long time ago. 

It is simply very possible that we have all been excited about the wrong formation. Wouldn't it be incredible if the three benches of the Three Forks became a bigger story than the middle Bakken?

To the casual observer/reader of the blog, it was just another routine day in the Bakken, but I don't think so. The Zenergy well, Filloon's blog that was written well before this well was announced.... and then look at the four QEP wells announced today.

If North Dakota does not hit 1 million bopd by the end of the year, it will not be because of the lack of what the roughnecks can do. Something else -- I don't know what -- would have to come along to keep us from getting to 1 million bopd. These wells coming off the confidential list are not trivial.

A Note To The Granddaughters

If I had a song for the roughnecks, I would post it. This will have to do. There are probably many, many other versions/videos of this song that are much better, but this one includes Joy McKean who wrote the song.  

Lights On The Hill, Slim Dusty

Regular readers are aware that I just completed a trip from Boston to Dallas. I-90; I-84; I-81; I-40; I-30, EIEIO. I don't recall the truck-busiest stretch of interstate across the US, but I-40 between Knoxville and Little Rock has to be among the top ten. It was quite incredible.

The #1 branded truck: FedEx. I used to recall a lot of Wal-Mart trucks but not so many this trip. But it seemed FedEx trucks were everywhere. I didn't see many USPS trucks. One wonders if ....  

One of the things I enjoy most about driving cross-country is driving among the trucks. I tend to drive at night for a number of reasons, not least of which, it's always a hoot to see how a lot of drivers have lit up their trucks.

I think the greatest thrill is watching a semi trailer that is, according to stenciled data on the rear doors, 14'10" in height racing under an interstate bridge at 80 mph -- and the bridge, according to a painted warning has a clearance of 14'11". You sort of hope a) the trailer was not mis-measured; b) the overpass was not mis-measured; and/or, c) the trucks tires were not over-inflated, adding an inch and a half to the height of the trailer.

Which begs the question: it seems that painting the clearance on the underpass is a "bit late." I would think it might be a bit more helpful to tell a trucker at least a mile in advance what the clearance is. At 80 mph, there is not a whole lot of chance that the trucker is going to stop his tractor-trailer just as he goes under the warning sign. LOL.


In Arkansas, the governor was nice enough to have everyone "stop and smell the roses (actually smell freshly cut hay"). A ten-mile section of interstate was shut down for repair. A thousand trucks and ten cars came to a halt. And then we sat. And watched vehicles go by with no problem in the other direction on the other side. (Their delay was earlier, but of course we did not know that; we just saw vehicles speeding along, while we were standing still.)

The interstate was a east-west. Perfectly east-west, not southwest, northeast, or something in between. Either one was going east or one was going west. Of course, I was headed west, to Dallas. The minivan has a built-in compass, and I happened to glance at it. It said the minivan was going east. So there I am, stuck in traffic, no chance of escape, and then a realization that I was headed in the wrong direction.

When a brain-reality-disconnect hits like that, I always enjoy the process my brain goes through trying to reconcile the impossible. I could not possibly be going in the wrong direction. I had not recently gotten off the freeway. I had not passed this way earlier. Every rational bit of rationalizing said I was going west, but the compass which is never wrong said "E." And then as quickly as it said "E" it went back to "W."

Until this moment, I could not explain how this happened. I figured it had to do with quantum mechanics and statistics, or as others might say, sh*t happens. But just now, it came to me. It's a digital readout. I turned off the minivan while we were stopped. When the traffic started moving, I turned the car back on, and just at that moment, I looked at the compass reading, and it just happened to be re-booting/re-setting when the engine was coming back on. And in the process it ran through "E" before it came to "W."

And all this time, I thought it was quantum mechanics and entangled neutrons. 


Thinking about that, sitting in traffic, when "E" should be "W"; the brain-reality-disconnect takes over; very disconcerting, reminds me of Air Force days, and my days in the back seat of the F-15.

One of the challenges flying high performance jets in the Air Force was spatial disorientation: body sensations tell the pilot he/she is heading "up" but yet the instruments tell him he/she is in a steep dive, as an example. At 500 mph, 10,000 feet above the ground, one does not get a lot of time to sort out whether your bodily sensations are correct or the instruments are correct. Flight surgeons and behaviorsal psychologists spend hours working with fighter pilots to convince them in those situations, trust the instruments. Easier said than done. Lots of memories.

Update On Zenergy's Omlid Well; The Omlid Is A TF3 Well; Huge Well

It is simply going to be impossible for me to keep track of what's going on in the Bakken. Thank goodness for readers sending in comments and Mike Filloon. I'm not sure if anyone else is providing so much information, free or otherwise.

A reader sent me this, regarding the Omlid well:
  • 20761, 2,196, Oasis/Zenergy, OMLID 18-19HTF, Elidah, t4/13; cum 98K 6/14; 35 stages; 3.65 million lbs proppant;
It came in at over 2,000 bopd, and produced 17,000 barrels of oil in 28 days of April. There are three (3) first bench Three Forks (TF1) wells offsetting it to the west, south, northeast, but this is the first TF3 well in this immediate area. The nearest TF3 might be CLR's Charlotte 3H about eleven (11) miles to the northwest in Banks oil field.

Again, this is a third bench Three Forks well. A third bench.

Some data points from the geology report:
  • targeting the Three Forks formation targeting the third bench of the zone
  • reached total depth in 31 days
  • horizontal about 11,472 vertical depth; total depth of 20,699
  • the middle Bakken came in at 10,950 TVD which ended up isopaching to landing at 11,155 
  • TVD and with there being plenty of room in the 3rd bench of the Three Forks formation the landing was kept the same at 11,162 TVD
  • the bit began building its way down into the Three Forks formation at 11,020 TVD .. intermittent layers of siltstone, sandstone, and dolomite
  • the first bench drilled at 0.5 - 1.5 min/ft with gases ranging from 286 - 2,357 units
  • the bit moved down into the shale/siltstone layer of the second bench at 11,160 MD, drilling at 0.6 - 1 min/ft
  • at 11,256 MD the bit moved down into top of the third bench; the top of this marker isopached to landing at 11,155 - 11,153 TVD
  • the top layer of the third bench was composed of siltstone that was very distinctive compared to the other members showing to be red orange, rusty orange, light to medium orange that was chalky
  • drilling at 05 - 1.5 min/ft; reading 300- 752 units of gas in the third bench of the TF formation 
One year ago, we only knew about the "Three Forks." No one really knew we were talking about the "upper" Three Forks. Now, we are into the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd benches. In some areas, maybe additional benches. And in some areas, as noted in an earlier post today, the Three Forks is going to be better than the Bakken. 

I am truly blown away. I could see CLR and EOG drilling a TF3, but seeing these smaller players do this, it speaks volumes.

In some areas, we are in the manufacturing stage in the Bakken; in other areas, we are still exploring. 

Thursday Evening News And Links -- Did We Just Kill The "Red Queen"? -- Zenergy's TF3 Well -- Four QEP Gushers -- "The Middle Bakken Is Good, But The Three Forks Is Better" -- Mike Filloon

Zenergy had a huge TF3 well.  When you read about the Omlid well, think about this, from the best writer on the Bakken, Michael Filloon, from SeekingAlpha earlier today (Bakken update: NE McKenzie County wells produce $33 million in under 18 months:
The middle Bakken is good, but the Three Forks is better. The Three Forks has greater thickness and depth than the middle Bakken. Northeast McKenzie County thickness ranges from 200 to 225 feet. It has up to four benches, two of which are consistent throughout the Bakken play. The third bench seems economic here, but there hasn't been enough de-risking to know for sure. The fourth bench is spottier than the third, and EOG commented a while back it thought the third and fourth could be fracced as one horizontal.
Lynn Helms said that a long, long time ago: the Three Forks might be better than the Bakken. The USGS estimates the Three Forks to be the same size as the Bakken. We all know how the USGS tends to underestimate; conservative; cautious.

Active rigs: 188 (steady, up one)

Non-Bakken: How many saw the article with this headline this morning: Bernanke costs Illinois $130 million -- this has to do with municipal bond ratings/interest/whatever. What a joke. The fact that Illinois has recently had its credit rating reduced is the big problem. The other big problem: Detroit will default and bondholders, who in the past have always been "guaranteed" their return, will take pennies on the dollar. Bernanke has little to do with Illinois' problems. The precedent was started with the GM bankruptcy. This comes from a review of Meredith Whitney's book which highlights the "central corridor" that includes North Dakota.

In North Dakota, there were ten (10) new oil and gas permits issued:
  • Operators: Samson Oil and Gas (3), Samson Resources (3), Slawson (2), Murex, OXY USA
  • Fields: Ambrose (Divide), Van Hook (Mountrail), Little Knife (Dunn)
  • Comments: Murex has a wildcat in Divide County; interesting to see that Samson Resources and Samson Oil & Gas each had permits on the same day
Wells coming off the confidential list were posted earlier; see sidebar at the right.

Five (5) producing wells were completed:
  • 24206, 2,342, QEP, MHA 8-04-33H-150-92, requested 640-acre spacing unit;  Heart Butte, t5/13; cum --
  • 24208, 2,573, QEP, MHA 7-04-33h-150-92, requested 1280-acre spacing unit; Heart Butte, t5/13; cum --
  • 24207, 2,641, QEP, MHA 6-04-33H-150-92, requested 640-acre spacing, Heart Butte, t5/13; cum --
  • 24209, 2,854, QEP, MHA 5-04-33H-150-92, requested 1280-acre spacing, Heart Butte, t5/13; cum --
  • 24108, 432, G3 Operating, G Larsen 1-14-23H, Strandahl, 
One permits was canceled:
  • 25265, PNC, Hess, BW-Rolfson-151-98-2116H-2, 
Operator transfer of fourteen (14) older wells from Layline Petroleum, LLC to Wapiti Operating, LLC.

Wells coming off the confidential list Friday:
  • 24180, drl, Statoil, East Fork 32-29 3H, no data, 
  • 24467, 1,469, MRO, Point USA 9-1H, Wolf Bay, t2/13; cum 38K 4/13;
  • 24510, 1,597, XTO, Mendenhall 12X-18H, t5/13; cum --

 24467, see above, MRO, Point USA 9-1H, Wolf Bay:

DateOil RunsMCF Sold


From CarpeDiem: crude oil production in the lower 48 US states hit a 27-y/o record; exceeds production last seen in May, 1986. Of the top 100 songs in 1986, only one worth mentioning, coming in at #27:

Take My Breath Away, Berlin

Last Post For The Morning; I Will Be Back Late This Evening; Nothing About The Bakken

I re-posted my notes on the recent Worldwide Developers' Conference (WWDC), sponsored by Apple, for those developing applications for Apple operating systems.

I re-posted them so folks could compare those notes with what is expected to come out of the developers' conference for Microsoft. While driving from Boston to Dallas, a news story on the radio suggested that the main topic will be .. get this ... Microsoft will "bring the Start button back."

I cannot make this stuff up.

Let's see if there's an internet story on this?

Yup, here it is: the headline at Christian Science Monitor --
At Build 2013, Microsoft unveils Windows 8.1 (complete with Start button)
The lede:
With Windows 8, Microsoft’s aim was to make an operating system that offered more or less the same experience on computers, tablets, and hybrid devices alike -- but many early adopters found the software confusing, since it contained features and design cues that didn’t make sense on all devices. 
With Windows 8.1, the first major update to the OS, Microsoft is bringing back familiar features that had originally been discarded, while doubling down on the idea that the OS can work equally well on a computer or a tablet.
The lack of a "Start" button was confusing for Windows early adopters.


(So, there's no misunderstanding: this is a comment on Microsoft, not a comment on Microsoft/Windows users. I use Windows products all the time. I'm simply talking about innovation and the challenges of innovation, in the context as Fanboy #3.)

Could This Make The Keystone XL Irrelevant? -- Motley Fool

You have no idea how much I hate video links. It take ten minutes to listen to fluff; one can speed-read the same transcript in 30 seconds. As a rule, I don't view video links -- I guess one could play them in the background while reading something else. Whatever.

But this title of the link is interesting. The interview has to do with Mexico opening E&P to non-Mexican companies.

Two years ago (or so) it was the general consensus that the US could not live without the Keystone. My, how times have changed. Now, the question is: why do we even need the Keystone? All it does is risk lowering the price of Bakken/WTI crude oil and lowering the price of gasoline at the pump, both non-starters for long-term investors in the fossil fuel industry. And, of course, undermining the power that OPEC has.

So, we'll hear from President O'Bama that the Keystone XL will harm the environment through increased CO2 emissions (though, of course, that makes no sense: a) the alternative to oil for China is coal; and, b) Venezuelan oil is the same as Canadian oil. But we have long left the arena of science when talking about the Keystone.

And, now, instead of minor spills easily contained onshore in Canada and fly-over country in the US, we can look forward to more oil spills in the Gulf of Mexico as Mexico turns to China to develop its fields, and China learns to drill deepwater wells in the Gulf. I can't make this stuff up. When the next oil spill in the Gulf occurs, Floridians can blame Nebraskans for starting this whole mess. Of course, it was just a matter of time, regardless.

I suppose there is one silver lining: the US Coast Guard will have real-world oil spills on which to practice command and control. 

For Investors Only: Oasis; 6x6 Per Section -- TYPO?

Because I was traveling earlier in the week, I was out of the loop on many, many stories. I am now catching up.

Investment stories on Oasis.

Disclaimer: this is not an investment site. Do not make any investment decisions based on what you read here or what you think you might have read here.

From Zach's:
Meanwhile, one can look at Oasis Petroleum Inc and Sanchez Energy Corporation as good buying options. The exploration and production firms – sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) – have solid secular growth stories with the potential to rise significantly from the current levels.
From Zach's:
This oil and natural gas exploration and production company delivered positive earnings surprises in the last 4 quarters with an average beat of 11.73%. Oasis Petroleum has witnessed an upward revision in earnings estimates on the back of strong first quarter results.
Oasis Petroleum’ first quarter 2013 earnings per share came in at 67 cents, surpassing the Zacks Consensus Estimate by 31.37%. Oasis Petroleum continues to perform well with its daily production touching 30,153 boepe a 71% increase over the first quarter of 2012.
Higher oil production along with improvement in realized prices boosted the top line of the company. Total revenue at the end of the first quarter was $248.3 million, surpassing the year-ago number by 79.1% and the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $219 million by 13.2%.
At Barron's
According to his analysis, better-than-expected production will fuel earnings outperformance, and he sees Newfield, Oasis, and Southwestern as the most likely candidates for second quarter beats. With most of the basis in development mode, Chandra writes, cost efficiencies, free cash flow visibility and depth of inventory will act as catalysts for the stocks. 
Chandra writes that companies are continuing to ramp up efficiency gains in shale, which in turn means lower well costs and faster production growth.
Read his thoughts on the individual names below:
Newfield, Poised To Overdeliver, Bear Case Diminishes. Comfortable with international sales in the range of $1.3 – $1.5B which we consider achievable given value for probable inventory. This is enough to fund almost two years of outspend. Major SCOOP efficiency gains around the corner as shedding intermediate casing in some test wells worked. Could shave $750,000 off well costs.
Oasis, More Of The Same Momentum. No new extensional TFS wells this quarter, but confidence in 6×6 development scheme is gaining (6 Bakken/6 TFS wells per section). Company had only 21 net TFS wells booked as proved undeveloped in 2012 reserves.There could be 800 TFS locations ultimately. The number of locations could rise still as the company’s current working interest is higher than what is in the presentation. A Lower Bench TFS well will be drilled this year, quicker than we’d expected.
I don't know if that is a misprint -- "6x6/section." I wonder if they meant "6x6/spacing unit." If they go to 6x6 per section, that would be 12x12/spacing unit in most areas -- i.e., 24 wells per spacing unit. I think they meant "spacing unit," not section. 

Catching Up On Enbridge; The Diluent Story Is Fascinating

I was out of the loop earlier this week due to traveling. Catching up on Enbridge, some recent stories:

Enbridge updates regional oil sands system status, press release
The release on Line 37, which connects the Long Lake Oil sands project to Enbridge's Cheecham Terminal, is believed to have resulted from ground movement on the right-of-way as a result of recent unprecedented precipitation levels which exceeded a 1 in 100 year event. Enbridge shut down all pipelines in the area as a precaution.
The southern segment of the Athabasca Pipeline (Line 19) between Cheecham and Hardisty was subsequently returned to service on June 23rd and on June 25th, the Alberta Energy Regulator approved the restart of the Waupisoo Pipeline between Cheecham and Edmonton.
However, the Athabasca and Wood Buffalo pipelines between Fort McMurray and Cheecham and Line 37 remain shut down as Enbridge completes data gathering and engineering analysis of the lines.
Canadian pipeline operator Enbridge said it restored service to one of three major pipelines it shut down over the weekend, but was still working to repair and return to service a 100,000 barrel-per-day line that leaked crude oil.

Motley Fool on the Keystone XL:
June 25, 2013:
"In conclusion, I think betting on Keystone to be approved is pretty sound. In all likelihood the pipeline will get approved sometime going forward. In fact, it's already completed in some locations, so it's just a matter of pressing forward and finishing the job."
June 27, 2013:
"The future looks bleak for the Keystone XL. .... That casts serious doubts on TransCanada's ability to extend the major project from Canada to southern United States. However, the State Department still has a say about whether the project will go through, and their report is expected to determine whether the project would benefit America.
However, the President's speech cast serious doubts on TransCanada's ability to execute the pipeline, and that should have shareholders concerned. The pipeline extension would cost about CAD$7.6 billion, and the firm is counting on the project for major revenue expansion.
Motley Fool: a looming diluent shortage for the Canadian sands.
Canadian oil sand producers face a new challenge - a looming shortage of pipeline diluent. And the problem threatens the industry's development.
Bitumen - the sticky, tar-like substance mined from the oil sands - is too thick to flow by itself. Rather it must be blended with lighter hydrocarbons, super-light oil called condensate and other natural gas liquids, in order to be shipped by pipeline. These products are called diluent.
Costs are rising. Alberta condensate prices averaged $108/b during the first three months of 2013, up $11/b from the fourth quarter of 2012. But demand for diluent is poised to increase further for two reasons.
First is rapidly growing oil sands production. Three barrels of bitumen require one barrel of condensate to flow freely. Oil sands output is expected to double to 3.8 million b/d by 2022.
Second, oil sand players are balking at building expensive upgrade plants which convert bitumen into refinery ready oil.
Both of these factors could push the demand for diluent from 330,000 b/d today to 935,000 b/d in ten years.
Earlier this week, RBN Energy had a story on increased diluent shipments from the Eagle Ford up to Canada.  That was in my Wednesday morning news and links post.

Job Watch -- Analysts Had It About Right -- Modest Decline -- In The Big Scheme Of Things: More Of The Same; Treading Water

Reuters is reporting:
Initial claims for state unemployment benefits dropped 9,000 to a seasonally adjusted 346,000.

Claims for last week were revised upward by another 1,000 (last week was a horrible week, even without the most recent revision). 

Economists polled by Reuters had expected first-time applications to fall to 345,000 last week.

The four-week moving average for new claims, which irons out week-to-week volatility, fell 2,750 to 345,750.

Enquiring Minds

Again, a reminder. Other sites have some great information on the Bakken. I find this site particularly useful for any number of reasons.

I could be wrong with regard to this post, but this is what I posted elsewhere.
June 27, 2013: an enquiring mind seeks information on lease rates for several locations, and wonders about future prospects. The individual notes that two of the locations do not have any any active wells. Unless I am misreading the NDIC GIS map server, in fact, all locations have horizontal laterals, and thus the leases are held by production.  This area is right in the heart of the Bakken and there will be at least a dozen wells in each spacing unit before it's all over, and possibly many, many more.
Again, I might be misreading the map, but it would be unusual to find any spacing unit in the Ross/Stanley area without an active well (though there won't be wells in every section because much of the area is spaced for 1280 acres [two sections]). Again, I could be wrong. I'm always skittish when I see something different than others; I have made some huge mistakes on the blog. But if alerted, I correct them.

Random Updates Of Two OXY USA Wells North Of Dickinson, North Dakota

Elsewhere someone is wondering about these two wells, still on confidential status:
NDIC File No: 22441     API No: 33-025-01623-00-00     CTB No: 122441
Location: SWSW 34-142-96     Footages: 350 FSL 1100 FWL     Latitude: 47.068613     Longitude: -102.837180
Current Operator: OXY USA INC.
Current Well Name: BINSTOCK 1-34-27H-142-96
Monthly Sales Data:
DateOil RunsMCF Sold


NDIC File No: 23845     API No: 33-025-01871-00-00     CTB No: 123845
Location: NENW 24-142-96     Footages: 277 FNL 1930 FWL     Latitude: 47.110470     Longitude: -102.791742
Current Operator: OXY USA INC.
Current Well Name: RIDL 1-24-25H-142-96
Monthly Sales Data:
DateOil RunsMCF Sold


The Russian Creek well: 31 days to drill, reach total depth.
The Manning oil field well: 30 days to drill, reach total depth.

A Reminder: Access To The Blog

Due to someone taking my original URL, links deep in the blog are broken to  many "original" milliondollarway posts.

If you click on a link and you get "milliondollarway" spam, simply replace "" with ""

It's a pain, I know, but I fix them as I find them. With over 11,000 posts and numerous links on the majority of posts, I will never get them all fixed. The good news: none of the original posts are lost.

For me, it's a minor hassle, but it does not bother me at all. I'm finding some great articles I had forgotten all about.

Musings On Chesapeake, Marathon, And The Tyler In Slope County, Southwest North Dakota

While traveling I got a nice note from a reader regarding North Dakota and a company that we've not talked about for a long time -- a company that still has lots of acreage in North Dakota but is not actively drilling.

Regular readers can probably guess who we're talking about.


To the best of my knowledge, Chesapeake still has over 400,000 net acres in the Williston Basin. There haven't been any articles suggesting they've sold it all off, though they don't talk about it any more.

Okay, that was background.

Marathon is requesting four spacing units to drill the Tyler formation in Slope County. I assume this is in/near the area where Chesapeake has all its North Dakota holdings.

A reader noted: According to ND GI-157 these locations are right in the middle of the southern "best" area for the Tyler. One can find geological publications at the NDIC website and here

The reader also noted that Marathon continued to acquire acreage in northeast Slope County even after Chesapeake quit leasing. The reader thinks that northeast Slope County is now pretty much leased and state lands are tied up with leases until 2015/2016. If MRO has some nice wells in the Tyler, the reader suggests that we could see Chesapeake back in the Williston Basin.

Further, the reader notes that Chesapeake still has nine rigs in the Williston Basin: seven in North Dakota and two in Montana (google: location, nomac drilling rigs). It is likely that Chesapeake's leases will be up in a couple of years, so they either need to renew, drill, or sell. Maybe that was one reason Chesapeake delayed their decision; let the leases run to their end before making a decision.

It would simply be awesome if MRO is successful with their Tyler wells. I might visit Dickinson just to see the economic burst of activity.

Thursday Morning News & LInks; Will The President Attend An African Funeral? Same-Sex Housing For Military Members? Europe Has Its Own "Keystone XL" Problem

Over the years, there has been some talk about whether secession is in the cards for some states, such as Texas. In the past, secession has always been along geographical lines, for example, "north vs south." But I wonder if one could have a secession drawn up along eco-political lines, e.g., "red vs blue" states. At some point, red states are going to get tired of subsidizing blue states. It appears that the situation is getting worse for the blue states, at least according to MW

Active rigs: 187 (steady, for several days now)

 RBN Energy: second in a series on where all this American light crude is going.

Wells coming off confidential list have been posted; scroll down. Zenergy has a huge well. 

WSJ Links

Due to time constraints, I did not spend much time on Section D (Personal Journal).  Section C (Money & Investing) does not have much. It is noted that gold is near a 3-year low, and the Dow is up another 150 points in early trading. Is this the third day in a row with a nice advance? If so, it speaks volumes about a) the Fed's recent comments; and, b) the state of the economy. "Overheard on the Street" says that "obesity" is now classified as a disease, not simply a condition. The Journal says this is mostly symbolic; not true. Those with diseases qualify for protection under the Disabilities Act of 1973, and might be eligible for incredible federal benefits. My first thought: those little blue placards giving them priority parking spots. If you don't have a little blue placard for parking, you simply aren't trying hard enough.

The fight begins! The coal industry will fight the president on his mandates, see Section B (Marketplace). There is also an article what O'Bama's initiatives mean for US utilities.

This is most interesting: "Barnes and Noble's mystery of vanishing sales." I've had lengthy conversations with my younger daughter re: B&N in the last couple of days, and just a few minutes ago, a long conversation with a 33-y/o building contractor, Tony, who is probably worth millions, and enjoys coffee in Starbucks where they have a collocated deli, who loves the B&N in the local area. So this is an interesting story in the Journal today. B&N doesn't want to talk about it, but it appears the chain is cutting back on number of new titles and is increasing shelf space for games and toys, in lieu of books -- this, of course, will send book readers to Amazon. Not a good sign if B&N is turning into a game/toy store.

Of course, regular readers know I would love this story: iPads help airlines cast off costly load of paper.  I guess the aircraft's navigation system is not affected by the crew's iPads, whereas the iPads used by the folks in the back of the plane, do (interfere with the plane's sophisticated navigation system -- which, when you think about it, should really, really concern the FAA about flying safety. Should all electronic devices (iPads, SmartPhones, laptops, etc) be banned from carry-on items allowed on the aircraft? It begs the question, doesn't it?

I won't link all the stories about the recent Supreme Court decisions; the stories are easily found everywhere. I have no problem with the rulings of the Court in the last couple of days.

Investors might like this story: companies still wary despite hefty profits.  I didn't read the article; may read it later. My first thought: investors need to be thinking seriously about whether they want to be "long" in "service" companies or companies that are very, very "manpower" intensive, or require lots of minimum-wage employees. O'BamaCare will kill them.

We've talked many, many times how robust North Dakota agriculture is. It seems this is not true in California: "California farm belt shrivels." Why?  Prolonged drought and regulations. Lots of story lines if one had time.

There are three stories on hero/traitor Snowden. I won't link them. The stories are easy to find across the internet.

Oh, I almost forgot. DOMA. DOA. Big implications. On some military bases, housing is at a premium  Of course, only married couples get housing meant for married couples. Yes, you see where I'm going. Commanders are going to have a tough time with same-sex couples at their official balls and ceremonies, but can you imagine the hoopla when a same-sex couple -- especially two men -- get on-base housing? This will be a hoot.

President O'Bama's trip to Africa will be overshadowed by the death of Mr Mandela. And won't this be interesting: If President O'Bama is in Africa at the time of Mr Mandela's death, would it be impossible for him NOT to attend the funeral -- which could disrupt the president's schedule, as well as create havoc in South Africa? 

Long, complicated story on a pipeline, but bottom line, Europe is again beholden to Russia with regards to natural gas. A great story.

The United Kingdom continues to stumble; but the government continues with plans for more austerity through 2015. I wonder how much of this has to do with their incredible energy debacle?

Italy is forced to freeze an increase in its VAT. Give them time.

The op-ed pieces are all good; I just don't have time to post them all. You are on your own.