Drilling in the Eagle Ford shale dramatically increased during the first quarter of 2012, as producers turned away from cheap natural gas to production from regions that yield higher priced oils and other liquids.
The number of new wells drilled in Texas’ Eagle Ford shale more than doubled during the first three months of 2012, compared with the same period a year ago, according to Bentek Energy analysis, which the U.S. Energy Information Administration highlighted on its website.
Operators started 856 new wells in the first quarter of 2012, compared with 407 in the same period a year ago, the energy market analysis firm reported.
There was also a record high number of 217 rigs active in the Eagle Ford during April.
Daily increase in activity ratcheted up production of oil and other liquids, from 182,000 barrels per day in April 2011 to more than 500,000 bpd in April, according to Bentek’s analysis. The Eagle Ford also produces about 2 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day.
According to Bentek, Eagle Ford crude oil and liquids production was approaching the levels of the booming Bakken play in North Dakota and eastern Montana during March 2012.