Sunday, December 20, 2015

5,120-Acre Spacing Units In The Bakken -- December 20, 2015; Kennedy Clan Rushing Off To Idaho?

This is being posted because a well on 5,120-acre spacing will be reported Monday.

For the archives, previously reported:

December 18, 2014:
  • 23424, CLR, Brooklyn-Bakken, establish a 5120-acre unit; 2 wells; Williams
November 20, 2014:
  • 23267, CLR, Hayland, Hamlet, and/or Stoneview-Bakken, establish 2 overlapping 5120-acre unts, 2 wells on each, Divide
  • 23268, CLR, Stoneview-Bakken, establish 2 overlapping 5120-acre units; 2 wells on each; Divide, Williams
  • 23269, CLR, Northwest McGregor, Stoneview, and/or Sauk-Bakken, establish an overlapping 5120-acre unit, 2 wells, Williams
  • 23270, CLR, Sauk, Stoneview, and/or Lindahl-Bakken, establish an overlapping 5120-acre unit, 2 wells, Williams
  • 23271, CLR, Sauk-Bakken, establish an overlapping 5120-acre unit, 2 wells, Williams
There may be others.

For newbies: note these are cases, not permits.

Global Warming -- Kennedy Clan Rushing Off To Idaho?

Breaking now: Heavy snowfall causes major outage in Mccall, Idaho, impacting about 10,000 customers.

Clock-boy wannabe: CEO of Air France says device discovered in bathroom of an Air France flight was a fake bomb made of cardboard, paper and household timer. Will Hollande invite perpetrator to Paris for "congratulatory science-project-well-done"?

A Look At A CLR Well On A 5,120-Acre Spacing Unit -- December 20, 2015

A CLR well on a 5,120-acre spacing unit / 8 sections will be reported Monday:
  • 29194, 827, CLR, Mildred 8-19H1, Brooklyn, Three Forks B1, 30 stages, 5.8 million lbs, 5,120-acre spacing; 17/18/19/20/29/30/31/32 -155-98; 
I track the Brooklyn oil field here. In the November, 2014, and December, 2014, hearing dockets there were several cases requesting 5,120-acre spacing units. There are currently three or four such 5,120-acre drilling units in the Brooklyn oil field (I think, four).

A quick look at the NDIC GIS map server suggests there are about 10 such 5,120-acre spacing units across the Bakken, most, if not all, within the quadrangle.

See this post for some of the 5,120-acre spacing units in the dockets.

For newbies, the Bakken began with 640-acre drilling units as the standard but quickly went to 1280-acre units which is currently the norm. We are seeing more and more 2560-acre overlapping spacing units, but until recently none larger. For me, this is the largest "defined" spacing unit (there are some unitized fields in which the entire field is a "drilling unit," I suppose).

The well comes off the confidential list this weekend, and will be reported on Monday's daily activity report. Production runs to date:

DateOil RunsMCF Sold

North Dakota's Unmanned Airborne Vehicles (UAVs)
Drones - Update

From The Dickinson Press:
The progress at the test site is just part of advancement seen on several fronts for the unmanned aircraft industry in North Dakota. Major players such as the University of North Dakota and North Dakota State University made strides this year in terms of research, but now have set their focus for 2016.
On the horizon for NDSU is a large-scale agricultural research project aimed at comparing imagery taken by unmanned aircraft from various altitudes while UND intends to create an unmanned aircraft flight training program. 
ObamaCare Update In The New York Times

This op-ed could easily have been written for The Wall Street Journal.

The worse thing the opposition could have done was de-fund ObamaCare.

To some extent, one can argue ObamaCare has been defunded by the entire Congress by delaying (and ultimately) killing the tax on "Cadillac" policies and the tax on medical devices.

The NY Times writer conveniently failed to mention that more than half of the ObamaCare co-ops have failed; it's just a matter of time before the rest go. The writer also failed to mention that one of the largest health care insurers is likely to drop out of ObamaCare (perhaps UnitedHealth already has).

Wells Coming Off Confidential List Over The Weekend, Monday -- December 20, 2015

Monday, December 21, 2015
  • None.
Sunday, December 20, 2015
  • 29194, 827, CLR, Mildred 8-19H1, Brooklyn, Three Forks, 30 stages, 5.8 million lbs, max trip gas of 5,403 units; flare averaged 15 to 20 feet 85% in primary zone; 12% in the secondary target zone; 3% in the "Internal 1 below the Three Forks target zone; a deep well, a vertical depth of 11,117 feet; ICO, t8/15; cum 38K 10/15;
  • 31406, SI/NC, Hess, EN-KMJ Uran-LW-154-93-2733H-2, Robinson Lake, no production data,
Saturday, December 19, 2015
  • 29195, 622, CLR, Mildred 7-19H, Brooklyn, 4 sections, t8/15; cum --
  • 30685, SI/NC, Petro-Hunt, USA 153-95-9C-4-3H, Charlson, no production data,
I track the Brooklyn oil field wells here.

I track the Charlson oil field wells here.


29195, see above, CLR, Mildred 7-19H,  Brooklyn:

DateOil RunsMCF Sold

29194, see above, CLR, Mildred 8-19H1, Brooklyn:

DateOil RunsMCF Sold

Steady Eddie -- Refinery Utilization -- December 20, 2015

Of all the oil and gas data tracked, this has to be the most boring, unchanging, "steady Eddie" graph I've ever seen, weekly US percent utilization of refinery operable capacity:

On the other hand, this data shows a significant trend in the amount of crude oil throughput in US refineries over the same period of time:

At the same time US gasoline demand:

Caveat: the time scales are different on all three graphs.

Three observations:
  • since around 2000, US gasoline demand has flattened, after reaching a peak in 2006 and 2007
  • crude oil refinery throughput has increased -- in the eye of the beholder, I think -- significantly
  • meanwhile, refinery utilization has remained incredibly stable (and way under capacity)
I woke up about 2:00 a.m. realizing that I had failed to note one of the top stories this past week. The reason I missed it, of course, is because the week's "top stories" have to do with the Bakken. I try to keep all non-Bakken stories off the weekly top stories posts.

In this case, however, I think it's important to note the story. I think the most un-reported or under-reported story this past week was something picked up by John Kemp: the surge in US oil imports. With the glut of oil in the US it's absolutely counterintuitive that imports are surging. There is a lag in reporting so we won't know whether it's heavy oil or light oil or both that is contributing to the surge.

The most recent import data is from September, 2015, and this is already late December, speaking of which -- US automobile manufacturers post their monthly sales the first business day after the preceding month. In most cases, car sales for any give month are posted within 18 hours after the end of the month. On the other hand, the US government energy-related data is delayed for two to three months -- giving "insiders" a lot of information to work with. Even estimates coming out early would be helpful -- but I digress.

The most recent import data is from September, 2015:

So, you say: Kemp says US crude oil imports are surging and yet the graph shows quite the opposite? The graph above only goes through September, 2015, and John Kemp was referring to the past couple of weeks.

From Reuters, written by John Kemp:
U.S. crude oil imports have accelerated over the last four weeks, pushing commercial crude inventories within a whisker of the record set in April.
Crude imports surged to 8.3 million barrels per day (bpd) last week, up from 7.0 million bpd four weeks earlier, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (
Imports are running at the fastest rate since September 2013, with almost all the extra crude arriving at ports along the U.S. Gulf Coast. (
Both the timing and the location are unusual because refineries and traders try to minimize stocks held along the Gulf Coast at year-end to avoid storage taxes imposed by Texas and Louisiana. 
Faster imports have pushed crude stocks higher even as refiners have boosted the amount of crude they process to a seasonal record 16.6 million bpd.
Be sure to click on the embedded links in the John Kemp article. 

I have a lot of thoughts with regard to the three EIA graphs above, and John Kemp's data, but those thoughts are way beyond my comfort zone to post publicly.

I posted the data because I think it is the most under-reported energy-related story.

Storage Capacity

Do you remember all those stories about crude oil storage capacity being maxed out in the United States? I am not going back to find them because a) they were likely inaccurate to begin with; and, b) they are now irrelevant regardless.

Reminder, US PADD districts and my personal thoughts:
  • PADD 2: the Gulf Coast (including Texas)
  • PADD 3: Cushing (includes Illinois and  the entire mid-continent including North Dakota) 
  • PADD 1: East Coast -- irrelevant
  • PADD 5: California -- really irrelevant
  • PADD 4: Rocky Mountain region -- almost as irrelevant as California
With regard to US crude oil storage capacity, I recommend those interested read this EIA report closely.

These are some of the highlights of that report (with my comments embedded):
  • the US has a huge -- a huge -- excess of storage capacity for crude oil
  • to repeat, the US has a huge -- a huge -- excess of storage capacity for crude oil
  • combined, the US Gulf Coast (55%) and Cushing (13%) account for 2/3rds of US crude oil storage capacity
  • inventories at the Gulf Coast and Cushing are at record highs: 309 million bbls
  • on a combined basis, only 70% of storage capacity is being utilized
  • record storage utilization was barely much higher at 71%, April, 2015
  • several years ago, the Gulf Coast and Cushing were often assessed separately (they still are), but combined utilization is now much more relevant given the increased pipeline capacity that can move crude oil south from Cushing to the Gulf Coast during a time of high global crude oil inventory builds
  • despite the record utilization, there is still more than 100 million bbls of capacity available in these two areas 
I assume historical data is available somewhere, and if so, I will eventually stumble across it, but for now, this screen shot of most recent storage data as a baseline for future reference (the link appears to be dynamic):

And now, I'm going back to bed, now that I feel better about posting the most under-reported energy-related story of the week.

With the US export ban on crude oil repealed, it will be interesting to look at this same data a year from now.

By the way, a reason for an increase in imports and an increase in storage of crude oil has been posted on the blog. Regular readers may remember it. It was very, very obscure. I doubt I can find it again. If I remember, I will come back to it later this week. But as I tell my granddaughters, if something doesn't make sense, google it or follow the money. In this case, you won't find the answer at wiki.


I see the Dallas Cowboys got beat "last night."

Got 'Em

Israel takes out Hezbollah leader

Maybe it's just me, but it seems, for the best bang for the buck, the Israelis are most efficient. Everywhere I read, the US and Russia are dropping tons of bombs on Syria and not a lot seems to change. Meanwhile, the Israelis have these isolated, surgical strikes, and report a successful mission.

Can you imagine all the intel that went into this mission to take out this one man?

Dirty Harry