New Mexico, with Permian Basin’s two leading counties, reversed a five-week decline in count of active oil and gas drilling rigs, according to Baker Hughes’ report of Nov. 15. New Mexico had fallen from 113 rigs as of Oct. 14 to 104 as of Nov. 8, but added a rig to 105. Also as of Nov. 15, Baker Hughes said there were 408 rigs in Permian Basin (412 previous week, 493 previous year), 408 rigs in Texas (413 previous week, 535 previous year) and 806 rigs in U.S. (817 previous week, 1,082 previous year).
The rig count is at its lowest since March 2017. Houston Chronicle said, “That’s caused the shale industry to shrink, attempting more financial discipline to woo back investors. The trend means weaker economic growth in Texas, where the economy is still heavily tied to oil, and more layoffs throughout the industry.”
New Mexico’s Lea (55 rigs) and Eddy (49) counties lead the Permian in rig count followed by Midland County with 45 rigs, Loving with 38, Martin with 31, Howard with 25, Ward with 24, and Pecos and Upton each with 22.
Robert McEntyre of New Mexico Oil and Gas Association told Associated Press last week the state’s producers are expected to top a record 300 million barrels of crude oil for the year, and daily production could reach one million barrels before 2020.
Rig counts in other leading states include Louisiana with 54, Oklahoma with 52 and North Dakota with 50. And in other leading regions, there were 60 rigs in Eagle Ford and 51 each in Haynesville and Williston.
This week U.S. Energy Information Administration said the nation set records in natural gas production, consumption and exports in 2018. The EIA Natural Gas Annual 2018 shows that dry natural gas production increased by 12 percent in 2018 to reach a record average of 83.8 bcfd. Texas remains the top natural gas-producing state (18.7 bcfd). Consumption increased 11 percent, driven by electric power sector, and exports increased 14 percent to 10 bcfd.

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