“How Tight-Oil Wells Grow Old”

Pump Machine At The Field

Trent Jacobs, JPT Digital Editor | February 01, 2020

Tight-oil production in the US set new records in 2019, but the banner year ended with an important caveat: more than two-thirds of crude production from shale plays flowed from wells drilled in the past 2 years. The figure reflects the fast-paced life of horizontal wells while also highlighting that older assets are not contributing as originally expected.
Wells brought online since the start of 2019 represented 45% of total US tight-oil production—3.5 million B/D out of an all-time high 7.74 million B/D. As more late-year production data flows in, the 2019 wells might represent closer to 50% of the total, according to information from ShaleProfile Analytics, a firm that aggregates public data from US oil and gas regulators. Another 25%, or about 1.9 million B/D, came from wells that started producing in 2018.