US Gulf of Mexico Hits Record Production

The Stones field is produced with the Turritella floating production, storage, and offloading vessel. The facility operates at the extreme depth of 9,556 ft. Source: Shell.

Average oil production in the US Gulf of Mexico reached a new benchmark of 1.6 million B/D in 2016, topping the previous record set in 2009 by 44,000 B/D. January’s average production reached 1.7 million B/D, marking a fourth straight month of increases for the offshore region.

These figures were published by the US Energy Information Agency (EIA), which predicts that crude output from the US Gulf will continue to rise into 2018.

Last year, there were eight offshore projects commissioned in the offshore basin, including Shell’s 50,000 B/D Stones floating production facility that started up in September and Anadarko’s 80,000 B/D Heidelberg spar platform which achieved first oil in January. Seven more projects are slated to start up this year.

The EIA notes that the improving production totals come amid a significant decline in offshore rig activity. In 2014, the average number of rigs drilling in the US Gulf was 55 compared with 22 in 2016. Correlated to this trend is a rise in exploratory wells drilled in proportion to development wells.

“This reflects operators taking advantage of the lower day rates in the current low price environment, with expectations of higher returns when crude oil prices rise and discoveries are brought into production,” the report reads.

Deepwater Gulf of Mexico Field Start Ups in 2016

Field Name

Majority Operator

Project/Facility Name

Water Depth (ft.)

Discovery Year

Gunflint

Noble Energy

Freedom

6,138

2008

Heidelberg

Anadarko

Heidelberg

5,271

2009

Julia

ExxonMobil

Jack/St. Malo

7,087

2007

Kodiak

BP

Devils Tower

5,006

2008

Stones

Shell

Turritella

9,556

2005

Thunder Horse   (South Extension)

BP

Thunder Horse

6,050

1999

Wide Berth

Apache

Baldpate

3,700

2009

Caesar/Tonga Phase II

Anadarko

Caesar/Tonga

5,000

2003

To read the full report follow this link.

US Gulf of Mexico Hits Record Production

12 April 2017


STAY CONNECTED

Don't miss the latest content delivered to your email box weekly. Sign up for the JPT newsletter.