ND oil production tops record

Highest producing well count reached

BISMARCK – There’s record production to report from North Dakota’s oil fields.

In his monthly release of production numbers, Lynn Helms, Department of Mineral Resources, reported Friday that the state’s oil fields pumped 39,350,346 barrels of oil in July. That equates to 1,269,366 barrels per day. Both numbers are all-time highs for the state.

The previous mark for barrels per day was 1,246,355 which was set in May of this year. According to Helms, 96 percent of the production comes from the Bakken and Three Forks formations in the western part of the state.

Helms also reported a new all-time high for the number of producing wells in North Dakota with 14,972. That tops the record set in June 2018 of 14,778 wells.

The high numbers come despite a current rig count of 65, down substantially from the state’s all-time high of 218 on May 29, 2012.

Sixteen drilling rigs are operating on the Fort Berthold Reservation. Production there is reported at 263,850 barrels of oil per day, up about 5,500 barrels per day from June. Fort Berthold lists 1,908 active wells, 415 approved drilling permits and an estimated 3,672 future wells.

Natural gas production has also reached an all-time high for the state. Statistics for July show 74,405,398 MCF captured, or 2,400,174 MCF per day. The previous daily record was 2,315,391 MCF.

Friday’s price of a barrel of North Dakota Sweet Crude was $57.50. The highest price ever paid for ND Sweet Crude was $136.29 in July 2008.