October 11, 2013

Texas drilling permits reach highest level in three decades

The Railroad Commission of Texas issued 1,606 new drilling permits in August, proving the state that has already experienced significant success with oil and gas production will continue to do so in the coming months.

The Railroad Commission of Texas issued 1,606 new drilling permits in August, proving the state that has already experienced significant success with oil and gas production will continue to do so in the coming months.

Of the permits issued by the commission, 1,438 were for drilling oil and gas wells, and 27 were for companies to re-enter existing well bores. Another 141 permits were given to recompletion operations.

Chairman of the Railroad Commission Barry Smitherman said the drilling permit applications have reached their highest level in 30 years, OilPrice.com reported.

In September, Texas had an average rig count of 927 - representing 55 percent of all onshore drilling rigs in the United States. Texas is also home to the majority of the country's crude oil production, averaging 1.7 million barrels per day in July, according to a report by the Railroad Commission of Texas. As of July 2012, Texas had produced 1.3 million bpd of crude oil. Overall output for July was 64 million barrels, 12 million more barrels than seen in July of last year.

Smitherman also said Texas could become the world's largest oil producer before the end of the decade, OilPrice.com reported.

“If we got to 3 million or 4 million barrels per day, we suddenly are in the club of the biggest producers in the world,” he said.

Natural gas production has also increased in Texas this year, with gas wells producing more than 8.4 thousand cubic feet per day in July. Gas output for the month reached 571,285,336 Mcf, an increase from the 533,864,038 Mcf produced last year, according to the commission's report.

A total of 1,576 oil wells and 500 gas wells were completed in August, also representing significant growth from last year. The report also said there are now a total of 155,654 oil wells and 91,757 gas wells in the state - numbers which are expected to continue to grow.

The Eagle Ford shale has contributed greatly to the oil and gas production in the state. Top oil- and gas-producing counties are those surrounding this formation, such as Karnes County, which produced more than 4.5 million barrels in July and Tarrant County that produced 62 billion cubic feet of gas in July.

There is no doubt energy companies will continue to invest in Texas oil and gas exploration. Broadwind Energy provides a variety of precision gears and gearboxes, such as Gleason spiral bevel gears, that enable the oil and gas industry. Broadwind's gears are used in frac pump drives in the highly successful hydraulic fracturing process, which has made it possible for the United States to unlock tight shale oil and gas formations around the country.