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Oil and Gas Roundup — April 21

April 21, 2014
TOPICS: In the news
A roundup of oil and natural gas industry news from around the state, nation and world:

State drilling rig count falls by five to 187 for week

The number of drilling rigs actively exploring for oil or natural gas in Oklahoma fell by five this week to 187, Baker Hughes Inc. reported Friday.

The tally is up seven from a year ago, when it was 180.

Nationwide, the net number of active drilling units remained unchanged this week at 1,831, according to Houston-based Baker Hughes. The total is up 73 rigs from a year ago.

Of the rigs operating this week across the U.S., 1,510 were exploring for oil, 316 for gas and five were miscellaneous.


Oklahoma unemployment rate hits 5-year low

Oklahoma's unemployment rate has fallen to a five-year low, dropping below 5 percent for the first time since 2008.

The Oklahoma Employment Security Commission reported Friday that the state's unemployment rate fell to 4.9 percent in March, down from 5 percent in February. With the help of a booming oil and natural gas industry, Oklahoma's unemployment rate remains well below the national average of 6.7 percent.

The OESC reports about 89,400 Oklahomans were unemployed in March.
The state's seasonally adjusted nonfarm employment grew by about 2,100 jobs last month, with most of the gains coming in the educational and health services sector.

The only sector to report job losses in March was government, which shed about 1,700 jobs.


Kansas oil production jumps; natural gas continues decline

Oil production in Kansas took another leap in 2013, rising 7.2 percent from the year before, while natural gas production in the state continued its long slide, according to final figures compiled by the Kansas Geological Survey.

Kansas producers extracted the most oil since the early 1990s assisted by the horizontal drilling boom in the several counties along the Oklahoma state line.

Oil production in Harper County, immediately southwest of Sedgwick County, more than doubled in 2013 from the year before and has more the quadrupled since 2009. Other counties seeing strong increases in recent years include nearby Comanche and Barber counties.

However, central and western Kansas still have most of the state’s highest producing counties, where traditional vertical drilling dominates.

The state’s top producing county, by far, remains Ellis County with more than 3.5 million barrels of oil. Other top producing counties in the area include Barton, Ness, Russell, Rooks, Finney, Trego, Stafford, Gove, Haskell and Graham counties.

Oil prices remain high, which has pushed exploration companies to continue to drill.

Read more here: http://www.kansas.com/2014/04/17/3410352/kansas-oil-production-jumps-natural.html#storylink=cpy


Forbes cover story on Harold Hamm

Rags to riches only hints at the trajectory of Harold Hamm’s life.

The 13th child of Oklahoma sharecroppers worked his way into such wild success that Forbes magazine has made Hamm its latest cover subject. The article by Christopher Helman focused on Hamm’s huge payoff in the Bakken Shale and predicts he could end up as this generation’s John Rockefeller.

Heady company, but Helman think it’s possible the 68-year-old Hamm — his fortune now above $17 billion — could end up among the world’s 20 richest people if his company Continental Resources Inc. doubles its production out of the prolific Bakken oil play in North Dakota.

“We really see no reason why it’s going to stop anytime soon,” Helman said in exclusive interview with the Tulsa World. “It’s amazing what they accomplished up there (in the Bakken) in such a short time.”

Hamm is convinced that the Bakken Shale — where Continental produces about 100,000 barrels per day — can double its output over the years. If that’s true and if Hamm holds his 70-percent stake in his company, his personal wealth could double to around $34 billion, putting him in the ranks of Google founders and such.

Read the Tulsa World story: http://www.tulsaworld.com/business/energy/forbes-compares-oklahoman-oilman-hamm-to-john-rockefeller/article_08727e78-c660-11e3-a78f-001a4bcf6878.html


Infographic debunks connection between seismicity and hydraulic fracturing

Despite what you may have heard, hydraulic fracturing does NOT pose a major risk of causing earthquakes.

In fact, most of the concern over earthquakes relates to wastewater disposal, specifically “Class II” wells used for oil and gas wastewater — not the process of hydraulic fracturing.

Here’s what actual experts – geologists, geophysicists, and engineers – have stated on “fracking,” wastewater injection, and earthquakes.

See the infographic here: http://energyindepth.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/EID_Seismicity1.pdf
 
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