Ohio’s Utica Shale is gonna be big, Energy Analysts International in Colorado says in a report given Monday in the Akron area.
“The Utica is on the tipping point of becoming the ‘next big play’ in onshore development,” the report says. EAI calls its forecasts “conservative.”
The report notes that Ohio was the leading oil producing state in the nation from 1895 to 1903. Findlay was an oil boom town then.
And now the Utica shale may have things booming again in Ohio, if drillers find as much oil, gas and liquids as experts think is buried deep under the ground.
EAI’s Steve Fillingham told a gathering of about 100 people at Firestone Country Club that the Utica shale likely will produce 250,000 barrels of light, sweet crude oil daily in just a couple of years – 2015-16 -- and that 500,000 barrels of oil is not out of the question.
That would make the Utica shale the third largest shale producer of oil, natural gas and natural gas liquids after the Bakken shale in North Dakota and Eagle Ford shale in Texas.
As more wells are drilled, the estimated output of the Utica will become more accurate, EAI said.
The Utica shale has 1 billion to more than 5 billion barrels of crude reserves, plus as much as 60 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, EAI said.
Very little of that has been tapped to date. Through July, there were 15 active horizontal wells in the Utica shale, with about 105 wells drilled.
Based on developments at other shale sites, it is likely that a small number of wells will contribute the most to Utica shale oil production.
Operators need to drill enough wells to make money, since about 30 percent of shale wells on average do not “pay out,” EAI said.
If the Utica shale is like the other better shale sites, “count on rigs being pulled from other plays,” EAI said.
Natural gas development in the Utica shale “is promising but could progress slower than Marcellus (shale) did in Pennsylvania due to soft prices,” the EAI report said.
The Monday conference, which focused on the Utica shale supply chain, was sponsored by the Northeast Ohio Trade & Economic Consortium and the Cleveland Port Authority.
Chesapeake Energy Corp,the Oklahoma-based firm is the No. 1 driller in Ohio.
Rig Count Interactive Map by Baker Hughes, an energy services company.
Shale Sheet Fracking, a Youngstown Vindicator blog.
The Ohio Environmental Council, a statewide eco-group based in Columbus.
Earthjustice, a national eco-group.
People's Oil and Gas Collaborative-Ohio, a grass-roots group in Northeast Ohio.
Concerned Citizens of Medina County, a grass-roots group.
No Frack Ohio, a Columbus-based grass-roots group.
Fracking: Gas Drilling's Environmental Threat by ProPublica, an online journalism site.
Pipeline, blog from Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Marcellus shale drilling.
Allegheny Front, environmental public radio for Western Pennsylvania.