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Bakken Shale Current Events


South Dakota Sand and Fracking Specs
April 10, 2014 | WashingtonTimes.com

The South Dakota Department of Environmental and Natural Resources conducted a study on 256 sand samples collected from the western part of the state to determine if they could be developed as frac sand sources for use in wells that use hydraulic fracturing in North Dakota’s Bakken formation.

Related: What is Frac Sand?

1.1 Million BPD from the Bakken – Three Forks
April 7, 2014 | Washington Post

The Bakken and Three Forks Formations are expected to produce about 1.1 million barrels of oil per day during 2014.

Tight Oil Production Growth!
April 3, 2014 | Energy Information Administration

This image from the Energy Information Administration shows the amazing growth of tight oil production from the Eagle Ford, Bakken, Utica and other formations.

White House Targets Methane
March 31, 2014 | The White House

As a greenhouse gas, methane can trap about 20 times more heat than carbon dioxide. The White House announced a climate action plan to reduce methane emissions by targeting emissions from the oil and gas, waste disposal, coal mining, farming and other methane producing industries.

Related: Night Time Maps of Natural Gas Flaring

Drilling Productivity in Shale Plays
March 25, 2014 | Energy Information Administration

“The productivity of oil and natural gas wells is steadily increasing in many basins across the United States because of the increasing precision and efficiency of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing in oil and natural gas extraction.”

More Natural Gas Being Flared in North Dakota
March 25, 2014 | Energy Information Administration

The amount of natural gas being flared in North Dakota is still increasing, in part because oil production is increasing.

Related: A collection of NASA images that show natural gas flaring at locations all over the world.

Natural Gas Well Productivity is Up!
March 16, 2014 | Energy Information Administration

The Energy Information Administration has published a chart showing new-well gas productivity gains for the major shale plays. Improving technology is enabling a higher yield per new well.

Problems Finding Employees for the Bakken Shale
March 4, 2014 | The Bakken

An article in “The Bakken Magazine” explains some of the problems faced by employers who need to find talent to develop the North Dakota Bakken Formation.

The Shale Boom is Just Starting
March 2, 2014 | Denver BizJournal

Ryan Lance, CEO of ConocoPhillips believes that the “shale boom” in the United States is just getting started, with several decades ahead.

Capturing More Natural Gas in North Dakota
March 2, 2014 | Bloomberg.com

North Dakota has been flaring about 1/3 of the gas produced from the Bakken Formation and drawing criticism as a result. Now North Dakota state government is trying to rally investments from natural gas processors and chemical manufacturing to utilize that gas.

An Effort to Curb Flaring in the Bakken?
February 9, 2014 | New York Times

An effort to curb natural gas flaring at Bakken Shale oil wells could result in a 40% increase in North Dakota natural gas output by the end of 2015.

Related: A collection of NASA satellite images that show natural gas being flaring at locations all over the world.

Tight Oil Production Sources
February 6, 2014 | Energy Information Administration

The Energy Information Administration recently published their annual Liquid Fuels and Natural Gas in the Americas report.

It includes information about new sources of oil production with a chart showing the percentage of United States shale oil coming from the Bakken Formation, Eagle Ford Shale, Niobrara Formation and the Permian Basin.

Should Royalty Owners Be Paid for Flared Gas?
February 4, 2014 | NPR

An energy company leases your land and starts drilling a well. The well starts flowing oil and natural gas. The oil can be collected and hauled away in trucks but dealing with the natural gas when there is no nearby pipeline is a nuisance. So instead of shutting the well in and waiting on pipeline the energy company decides to flare the gas and sell the oil. That wastes gas that the royalty owner might have been paid for.

Natural gas is being flared from so many places on this planet that you can see it from space.

Gas in Bakken Crude?
January 16, 2014 | Reuters

Some crude from the Bakken Formation might contain significant amounts of natural gas that might make it more flammable and prone to explosions during transport.

Shell Backs Out of Gas to Liquids Plant
December 15, 2013 | Bloomberg

Royal Dutch Shell was planning to spend $20 billion on a natural gas-to-liquids plant on the Gulf coast but cancelled the project. They are not new to this business as they own the largest gas-to-liquids plant in the world in Qatar and another one of the largest in Malaysia. They are also building the world’s largest floating LNG plant for a field off the coast of Australia.

If you watch the news about natural gas you have seen a huge rush to permit LNG plants that will export natural gas out of the United States, other companies getting into the LNG and gas-to-liquids businesses, multiple natural gas developments off the coastlines of every continent but Antarctica, countries all over the world realizing that they have a huge amount of natural gas in shale, enormous amounts of gas being flared instead of captured and all of that is before we count gas in the polar regions and methane hydrates.

A Shortage of Pipeline Capacity
November 26, 2013 | BizJournals

The San Antonio Business Journal has an article that describes how pipeline capacity is throttling production from the Eagle Ford Shale of Texas and the Bakken Formation of North Dakota.

Related: What is the Eagle Ford Shale?

Production Declines in Natural Gas Wells
November 24, 2013 | Geology.com

Lots of property owners who signed a lease in one of the natural gas shale plays are now receiving monthly or quarterly royalty payments. Many of these people were pleasantly surprised with the size of their first royalty check — but then shocked to see the size of subsequent checks fall rapidly. What’s happening?

Bakken at a Million Barrels per Day
November 17, 2013 | Energy Information Administration

“The latest monthly update of estimated crude oil production in the Bakken region of North Dakota and Montana shows total wellhead output topping 1 million barrels of oil per day (bbl/d) next month.” Quoted from the Energy Information Administration.

Shale Sweet Spots and Production Declines
November 6, 2013 | USA Today

Some people think that a few “sweet spots” are supporting most of the production in the oil and gas shale plays. They point to the huge annual production declines and speculate that the “shale boom” will not last very long.

Natural Gas Flaring from Space
October 30, 2013 | Geology.com

We have posted views of Earth from NASA’s Suomi satellite that show night illumination and natural gas flaring for oil industry sites in the Bakken Formation, Eagle Ford Shale, Alaska North Slope, United States Gulf, Mexican Gulf, Venezuela Orinoco Field, Brazil offshore basins, North Sea, North Africa onshore, west Africa offshore, and Persian Gulf.

Tight Oil and Gas Drilling Productivity Report
October 27, 2013 | Energy Information Administration

The Energy Information Administration has initiated a monthly “Drilling Productivity Report” for tight oil and gas that will report on activity in the Bakken, Eagle Ford, Marcellus, Haynesville, Niobrara and Permian Basin areas.

Shale Oil to Hudson Bay and on to Europe??
October 27, 2013 | E & E Publishing

E & E Publishing has a new article titled: Moving shale oil across melting tundra: huge and potentially risky business. It concerns a proof-of-concept transport of oil by rail from wells in the Bakken Shale and Alberta Oil sands to a Hudson Bay port for shipment to Europe. This is another alternative for a failing Keystone XL pipeline effort.

Growth in Bakken and Eagle Ford Oil Production
October 24, 2013 | FuelFix

Oil production from the Bakken Formation rose 26,000 barrels per day in September, while Eagle Ford production rose by 24,000 barrels. The increase for Permian Basin, Haynesville, Marcellus, and Niobrara combined was 12,000 barrels per day.

US Oil Production Highest Since the 1980s
September 6, 2013 | FuelFix

Hydraulic fracturing in new shale plays has pushed United States oil production to its highest levels since the 1980s.

If natural gas liquids, lease condensate and other liquids are added, current numbers are even more impressive when compared to the past. (See chart below)

Related: Oil Production from the Eagle Ford Shale

Getting Bakken Oil Out of North Dakota
September 2, 2013 | NationalJournal

The long-delayed Keystone XL pipeline was thought to be a way to get Bakken oil out of North Dakota and Montana. Now alternative pipeline and rail expansions have been developed to transport the crude.

Reducing Natural Gas Flaring in the Bakken
August 13, 2013 | InForum.com

Sally Jewell, Secretary of the Interior, recently visited North Dakota. Part of her purpose there was to learn about natural gas flaring. About $3.6 million in natural gas is wasted through flaring in North Dakota every day.

Related: Global view of natural gas flaring.

Rocketing North Dakota GDP
July 15, 2013 | Energy Information Administration

“In recent years, North Dakota has seen significant gains in real gross domestic product per capita, coinciding with development of the Bakken shale play. In 2001, North Dakota’s GDP per capita was well below the U.S. average, ranking 38th out of 50 states. [...] By 2012, its real GDP per capita was $55,250, more than 29% above the national average. Quoted from the Energy Information Administration website article.

Tax Breaks to Stop Natural Gas Flaring?
July 3, 2013 | Fuel Fix

Drillers in North Dakota can now qualify for special tax breaks if they use natural gas as a fuel instead of flaring.

NASA recently published an image demonstrating that flaring natural gas in North Dakota can be seen from space.

Bakken Boom in Western North Dakota
February 14, 2013 | Fox Business

The jobless rate in the 12 North Dakota counties over the Bakken Formation is less than 2% and employers are having a very difficult time attracting talented workers – even though the population of these counties is growing rapidly.

We are constantly looking for interesting items related to geology and general science. When we find something interesting we share it here. Bookmark this page and visit often. You can also receive our news for free by RSS feed or email. We publish updates three or four days per week.





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