Tuesday, September 20, 2011

PA Ranks Second In Producing Gas Wells

Only Texas with 93,000 gas wells in 2009 had more gas wells than Pennsylvania, according to the Energy Information Administration. Pennsylvania ranked second with more than 57,000 producing gas wells in 2009. More than 95% or more than 55,000 of the PA gas wells were traditional, shallow wells and not Marcellus shale wells.

The number of producing gas wells in Pennsylvania has nearly doubled since the 1990s when gas prices were often at $2 for a thousand cubic feet or lower.  Importantly, in terms of the number of producing gas wells, as distinguished from the volume of gas produced, traditional, shallow gas wells account for 90% of the increase in gas wells.

No matter how the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection organizes its oil and gas staff it has a big job.  Staffing levels and resources to do that job are more central to mission than organizational charts.

Despite the high number of producing wells that accounted for about 12% of all gas wells in the USA during 2009, Pennsylvania produced just a bit more than 1% of US gas in 2009.

As the big Marcellus wells start producing, Pennsylvania gas production is surging and now accounts for about 6% of US production.

Finally, which state ranked third in the number of gas wells? West Virginia. It too is home to both numerous traditional wells and a increasing number of  Marcellus wells.

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