Powder River Basin News Pulse February 2022

Posted: March 22, 2022

The Powder River Basin | February 2022

Field Overview

The Powder River Basin, known for its coal deposits, is located in Southeast Montana and Northeast Wyoming. The basin is named so because it is drained by the Powder River. Major cities in the area include Gillete and Sheridan, Wyoming and Miles City, Montana. There is a recent resurgence in oil and gas production as a result of horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing. This resurgence is occurring mainly in the Wyoming part of the basin, which is historically known as the source of the basin’s oil.

State Drilling Statistics

Total Rigs in Wyoming- 14 (-1)
Total Rigs in United States – 650 (+40)
Total U.S. Rigs 62% YTD

State Permitting Data
Permits Approved – 30

Powder River Top Producer

Top Producer by Oil – Continental Resources

Top Producer by Gas – Continental Resources

Basin Highlights

Biden Administration Misses Deadline to Hold First-Quarter Lease Sale in Wyoming

Wyoming is the country’s number one net energy supplier and a major player in the oil, gas and coal production industry. However, operators in the state are becoming increasingly upset about the lack of federal oil and gas lease sales, Wyoming has now missed these sales for five straight quarters. The reason for the delay is to blame on a U.S. District Court ruling that blocks the Biden administration from using an increased social cost of carbon in decision making. This change means that analysis of planned and future sales need to be revised to reflect the new policy, meanwhile taking up valuable time for operators. 

Gordon: ‘Mr. Biden, tear up your energy policy. Let Wyoming power our country’

Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon has recently voiced his criticism of the Biden administration’s poor handling of the oil and gas industry during his “State of the State” message to the Wyoming Legislature. Gordon highlighted how Biden’s decision to pause federal oil and gas lease sales served to raise inflation, lower stateside production and increase oil imports from Russia. Gordon made the case for letting Wyoming play its role in powering the country through fossil fuel and renewable energy sources. He ended his message with “Innovation, not regulation is our way forward to give our nation the energy it requires…”

Two of Three Fossil Fuel Preservation Bills move on to Second Week of Budget Session

The coal industry in Wyoming has been declining for the past decade, now the state relies heavily on oil and gas to fund public services. With the fossil fuel industry in decline as well, Wyoming fears it may not be able to meet its population’s needs while keeping taxes at a reasonable level. Hence, a number of bills aimed to protect the industry, two of which have made it to committee for review. While Wyoming fights to stay alive they are also expanding their energy production to renewables to stay relevant in the ever changing landscape that is the energy industry. 

Operators With Most Permits in WY

1Wexpro Company12
2Anschutz Exploration7
3Ultra Resources5
4Devon Energy3
Hyperlinks to available Q3 2021 Reports

Top Producers Oil

ChangeRankCompanymbbls Production (01/22)
1Continental Resources325.8
2Rockies Resources65.4
3Bright Rock30.2
4Titan Exploration22.3
5Signal Hill16.4
Hyperlinks to available Q3 2021 Reports

Top Producers Gas

ChangeRankCompanyMcf Production (01/22)
1Continental Resources509.7
2Rockies Resources131.3
3Titan Exploration78.6
4Bright Rock26.3
Hyperlinks to available Q3 2021 Reports

Rig Count

Wyoming Oil Production

Wyoming Gas Production

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