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Key Insights on the Eagle Ford Shale

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Nov. 20 2020, Updated 3:56 p.m. ET

Eagle Ford Shale

The Eagle Ford Shale is a gas and oil producing shale formation in south Texas. It extends to northeast Texas and touches the Mexican border. Oil is usually found in the northern part of the formation, while natural gas—which comes in two forms, wet and dry—exists in the southern part. In contrast, most other plays produce primarily oil. The Eagle Ford Shale is considered to be liquid-rich and an oil play despite producing both oil and gas.

Petrohawk Energy, which was acquired by BHP Billiton (BHP) in 2011, and Lewis Energy (LWSE) were some of the first operators to drill in the Eagle Ford Shale. Other companies that have large acreage positions include EOG Resources, Pioneer Natural Resources (PXD), and Devon Energy (DVN).

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Eagle Ford activity since 2008

As the images above show, oil and natural gas production in the Eagle Ford has increased significantly since 2008. While oil and gas production in 2017 fell from the peak levels seen in 2015, production volume growth in the past decade has been significant.

The EIA’s (U.S. Energy Information Administration) monthly drilling productivity report for March 2017 indicated a 28,000-barrel-per-day increase in oil production month-over-month in the Eagle Ford. Natural gas production increased 43 million cubic feet per day month-over-month. In this series, we’ll look at drilling activity in the Eagle Ford. But first, let’s look at a key advantage enjoyed by Eagle Ford producers.

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