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Utica Shale Natural Gas Production: Slowest Growth in October

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Nov. 24 2015, Updated 9:32 p.m. ET

Utica Shale natural gas production

According to the EIA (US Energy Information Administration), the Utica Shale in eastern Ohio has become one of the fastest-growing natural gas-producing regions in the United States. In its Drilling Productivity Report released on November 9, 2015, the EIA estimates that Utica Shale’s natural gas production reached 3.0 Bcf (billion cubic feet) per day in October 2015. That’s 2.1% more than production in September and 69% more than production one year previously.

The Utica Shale saw its slowest natural gas production growth in October 2015. But over the past eight years, natural gas production at the Utica Shale rose by more than 17x.

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Rigs and monthly additions on per-rig average

According to Baker Hughes (BHI), there were 20 rigs operating at the Utica Shale as of November 9—one rig more than in September. In comparison, 42 rigs were in operation at Utica Shale last year.

From October 2007 to October 2015, additional natural gas production per rig at the Utica Shale rose from ~0.18 MMcf (million cubic feet) per day to 5.9 MMcf per day—a 31x increase. In the 12 months prior to October 2015, natural gas production additions per rig rose by 59%.

Utica Shale producers

Higher natural gas production and productivity gains have benefited major energy producers at the Utica Shale, including EQT Corporation (EQT), Consol Energy (CNX), and Chesapeake Energy Corporation (CHK).

Consol Energy makes up 0.2% of the Energy Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLE). It forms 0.01% of the SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY).

Continue to the next part of this series for a look at natural gas production at the Haynesville Shale.

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