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A new study published today by Rystad Energy forecasts that there will be more than a million kilometers of new oil and gas wells drilled by 2023 globally; the distance of these wells combined is more than the distance to the moon and back.
Behind this push for oil and gas wells is North American shale, which, Rystad says, is expected to account for 600,000 kilometers of the million.
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Rystad’s Head of Consulting, Erik Reiso, refers to the drilling onslaught to be seen in North America as “in a league of its own thanks to the shale boom,” with six of ten of the new wells in North America drilled in shale basins—wells that are typical longer than other types of wells.
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While the top four offshore operators are expected to account for a quarter of the new offshore wells, the top ten onshore operators will account for only a third of the new wells in the next five years.
Discoveries of conventional resources on a global scale in Q1 2019 hit 3.2 billion barrels of oil equivalent, Rystad said in a separate statement to Rig Zone on Monday, with February seeing 2.2 billion boe of that. More than 2.4 billion boe of that was discovered by oil majors, with ExxonMobil coming out on top.
“If the rest of 2019 continues at a similar pace, this year will be on track to exceed last year’s discovered resources by 30 percent,” Rystad Upstream Analyst Taiyab Zain Shariff said in a company statement sent to Rig Zone.
This search for new discoveries is as of yet not expected to slow this year, with another 35 high-impact exploration wells already planned, that if successful, will make 2019’s total discovered resources “the largest since the downturn of 2014,” Shariff added.
By Julianne Geiger for Oilprice.com
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Julianne Geiger is a veteran editor, writer and researcher for Oilprice.com, and a member of the Creative Professionals Networking Group.