By Bob Downing
Beacon Journal staff writer
There was plenty of natural gas drilling in Ohio in 2012: nearly 670 miles of vertical and horizontal wells were drilled.
Some of the horizontal legs being drilled in Ohio now surpass 3 miles in length.
Chesapeake Energy, the No. 1 player in Ohio’s Utica shale, drilled nearly 305 miles of wells in Ohio in 2012, according to a new report from the Ohio Oil and Gas Association.
The DeBrosse Memorial Report: 2012 Oil and Gas Activity in Ohio was presented recently by Pete MacKenzie, the association’s vice president of operations, at the group’s annual winter meeting in Columbus. The association posted the report online this week.
Chesapeake’s 1,609,781 feet of wells were produced by 158 wells.
In all, Ohio wells totaled 3,534,675 feet drilled in 2012 or nearly 670 miles. That’s equal to the distance from Akron to Des Moines, Iowa.
That compares to 1,718,768 feet drilled or 325 miles in 2010 and 1,994,203 feet or 377 miles in 2011.
“There is still a lot of characterization going on,” MacKenzie said of Ohio drilling. Drillers are still testing (the Utica shale) out and the needed infrastructure (pipelines and gas processing plants) will soon be coming online,” he said.
No. 2 for footage was EnerVest with 184,008 feet or nearly 35 miles.
Oxford Oil is No. 3 with its vertical-only wells 127,579 feet.
Other totals: vertical-only Knox Energy, 97,331 feet; Anadarko, 88,702 feet; Antero, 77,289 feet; CNX, 67,638 feet; and Hess, 62,763 feet.
Oxford Oil had 69 wells and Knox had 40 wells. Other totals: EnerVest, 32 wells; Northwood Energy, 18 wells; Anadarko, 11 wells; MFC Drilling, 11 wells; and PDC Energy, 11 wells.
Those totals include both horizontal and vertical-only wells.
Carroll County is No. 1 for drilling in Ohio with 81 wells in 2012. Those wells totaled 989,218 feet in 2012.
Noble County was second with 51 wells. Licking had 45; Stark, 44; Knox, 40; Columbiana, 39; Monroe, 37; Jefferson, 27; Belmont, 24; and Guernsey, 24.
Columbiana County was No. 2 with 285,976 feet drilled in 2012.
Stark County was No. 3 with 253,905 feet. Fourth was Jefferson with 245,109 feet. Next was Noble, 232,019; Harrison, 199,770; Monroe, 155,525; Licking, 130,731; Guernsey, 117,871; and Mahoning, 110,843.
In 2012, the 625 wells drilled averaged 5,655 feet, the report said.
Utica wells totaled 424 in 2012 and that represents 42 percent of the drilling activity in Ohio.
Four Ohio counties recorded their deepest vertical wells in 2012: Jefferson, Mahoning, Monroe and Trumbull.
Chesapeake Energy recorded a vertical well of 10,260 feet in Jefferson County.
D&L Energy had a well that is 10,088 feet in Mahoning County. It also had a 9,038-foot-deep well in Trumbull County. It is the company that triggered 2011 earthquakes in Youngstown and was tied to 2013 illegal dumping of drilling wastes in Youngstown.
Statoil has a well in Monroe County that is 10,980 feet deep.
Fourteen Ohio counties had records set in 2012 for the longest horizontal legs:
• Belmont, 14,250 feet.
• Columbiana, 14,844 feet.
• Harrison, 16,439 feet.
• Mahoning, 9,958 feet.
• Muskingum, 12,871 feet.
• Portage, 14,221 feet.
• Stark, 13,525 feet.
• Carroll, 14,800 feet.
• Guernsey, 11,778 feet.
• Jefferson, 16,640 feet.
• Monroe, 14,686 feet.
• Noble, 14,516 feet.
• Sandusky, 3,526 feet.
• Tuscarawas, 12,342 feet.
The report says there were 543 Utica wells being permitted, drilled and being put into production in Ohio in 2012.
Chesapeake Energy had 346 of those wells.
The other players were (alphabetically) Anadarko, 12; Antero, 18; Atlas Noble, 5; CNX, 21; Carrizo, 2; Chevron, 2; Devon Energy, 13; Eclipse Resources, 1; and EnerVest, 16.
Also EQT, 3; Mountaineer Keystone, 7; Gulfport Energy, 31; Hall Drilling, 1; Hilcorp, 3; Hess Resources, 19; HG Energy, 16; Halcon, 2; Petroleum Development, 4; RE Gas Development,13; Sierra Resources, 3; Swepi, 1; and XTO Energy, 4.
That’s a total of 23 companies drilling in Ohio in 2012.
Additional players are also getting involved. BP got its first state permit last week for its first Utica well in Trumbull County.
Bob Downing can be reached at 330-996-3745 or firstname.lastname@example.org.