MDN M-U Upstream Almanac 2018 – Who’s Drilling Where & How Much?

MDN is very excited to announce the publication of the Marcellus & Utica Shale Upstream Almanac 2018. The Almanac is a deep dive into the numbers, designed to answer the questions: “Who’s drilling where and how much?” and, “What are the trends? Is drilling going up, down, or maintaining?” It has taken us nearly one year to research and produce this 397-page report. Using data from the Pennsylvania Dept. of Environmental Protection, Ohio Dept. of Natural Resources, and West Virginia Dept. of Environmental Protection, MDN has produced the only report of its kind, looking year by year at (1) how many Marcellus/Utica wells were spud (drilled or begun to be drilled), (2) how many wells are actually producing, (3) how many permits have been issued for new shale wells, (4) how much production was generated for methane, oil and NGLs. This information is available year by year for 2011-2017–not only by each individual county where there was any kind of M-U activity, but also by individual driller. We even show detailed data down to the town level. Because we analyze the data year by year using charts to map the data, important trends become obvious. If Marcellus/Utica drilling activity is important to you, the Almanac is THE critical tool that will help answer many of the questions you have…

Who Will LOVE This Report?

Anyone who works for an exploration and production (E&P or “drilling”) company whose job revolves around drilling (engineering, logistics, marketing, management, accounting, landmen) will find this report a must-have reference.

Anyone who works for a “services” company–oilfield services, construction companies, trucking firms, title companies–anyone at “supply chain” companies providing products and services to drillers will find the Almanac a critical tool.

Figure out who’s most active and where. Is drilling activity going up or down? Where are the counties (and towns!) where drilling is picking up? Where is it already mature? New drilling activity requires certain products and services, but don’t overlook those places where drilling happened in the past and now percolates along with ongoing production. Those places need a different set of products and services (banking, wealth management, legal).

How about landowners and rights owners? Yes, you too will find tremendous value in the new Almanac.

Spinning Information Gold Out of Raw Data Hay

Each state environmental agency–PA DEP, OH DNR, WV DEP–makes data about shale drilling publicly available. But the data at each of these agencies lives in multiple/different databases and tables. Permit data is in one table, production data in another. Information about well location (GIS information identifying which town it’s in) is often in yet a different database. It’s no easy nor small task to pour all that data into a single, harmonized database, and then query the data to pull out meaningful numbers. No one else has done what we have done with the data. No one.

After assembling the data (which took months), we were able to construct queries to pull out the numbers we were looking for. Numbers to tell us: How many wells were spud (drilled or begun to be drilled)? How many wells were actually producing? How many permits issued? We were able to plug those numbers into a spreadsheet, like the following:

The above is just a portion of the table we created for Allegheny County. We also have detailed numbers for 2011-2014. We first constructed spreadsheets like the above for every county in PA, OH and WV where there was/is measurable M-U activity.

As you can see in the table above, in the light green columns, were also pulled in production information. The Gas column shows how many million cubic feet (Mmcf) of gas was produced in a given year (by driller and by township), Cond means condensate (or NGLs), and Oil.

But then we thought, are there charts and graphs we can use to more easily/quickly understand all of that data? The data in those tables is fantastic and tells the story–but reading row after row of detailed data will make your eyes glaze over. So we started playing and found that by charting the data, all of a sudden it’s like going from night to day, from plain old color TV to ultra high definition 4K.

For each county, we begin with a set of line graphs, which shows us (year by year) the trends:

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Then we took the first graph above, showing spud, producing and permits (numbers of wells in each case) and drilled down further, to reveal the drillers behind the numbers for each of those categories. We use a bar chart for each driller for each year to give you a sense of the ebb and flow of activity. Is a given driller’s number of spud or producing wells going up over time? Down? Staying the same? Is a driller requesting and receiving more permits over time? Have permit requests stopped? All of that information is now quickly understood with a glance:

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Finally, we zoomed in on production information. We use a stacked bar chart which shows each year, one “pancaked” on top of the next, for each driller. By stacking each year, you can see how tall the overall bar is, meaning which drillers have produced the most (or the least) for each category of production: methane (gas), condensate (NGLs), and oil:

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We hope you agree that this is terrific information! We have taken the raw data and have made it useful, pregnant with meaning. Quick and easy to understand and get a sense of what is happening. We’ve done it for each individual county.

Building from the Bottom Up

But we didn’t stop with just the counties. Yes, county by county (there are 64 counties across all three states total) we show a series of up to 9 charts followed by detailed tables with the “raw” data for that county. But then we queried the data for a statewide look. Here’s one example, showing cumulative gas production for all PA counties:

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We also have a chart showing cumulative for all drillers.

Finally, we added all of the statewide data together and produced a series of charts showing the high-level view for the entire region. Here’s an example showing production by state for gas, condensate and oil:

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All of the above to say the Marcellus & Utica Shale Upstream Almanac 2018 is a completely unique report. You won’t find it anywhere else. No one else has put this kind of time and effort into producing a report that catalogs what has happened from the 2011 to the present (as of 2017). This is a must-have report if your job, or your income, depends on the Marcellus/Utica.

We’ve attached a pretty stiff price to the report–$295–in recognition of the time and effort it’s taken to produce it. You can’t get this information anywhere else at any price. We hope you agree it is well worth the money. We offer a money-back guarantee.

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