EnerVest’s Grand Experiment: Fracking Clinton Sandstone in Ohio

the grand experimentLong before the words “Marcellus” and “Utica” entered the public discourse and consciousness of Ohioans, there was the Clinton Sandstone. For years conventional drillers have been sinking wells in the Clinton, which is found 4,500 feet below the surface (the Marcellus and Utica Shale layers are deeper). The Clinton lies under 25 counties in eastern Ohio. Over the years, some 35,000 conventional (vertical) wells have tapped the Clinton Sandstone in Ohio. EnerVest, one of the largest acreage holders in the Utica Shale (and in the Clinton Sandstone), has embarked on a great experiment. What if you turned a Clinton Sandstone well horizontal, like a Utica or Marcellus well? Would it work? Could you get more gas out of the sandstone by fracking it like shale? EnerVest has drilled seven horizontal wells so far, with a permit to drill another and a request to drill a ninth. Here’s the details, along with the differences between a Clinton horizontal well and a Utica horizontal well…

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