Record setter

BISMARCK North Dakota continues to set records in oil production with a preliminary new all-time high of 1,092,617 barrels a day produced in June. That’s an increase of more than 52,000 barrels a day compared to the May figures.

Lynn Helms, director of the North Dakota Department of Mineral Resources in Bismarck, released the most recent oil and gas statistics on Friday.

The state also set a preliminary new all-time high of 1,253,154 million cubic feet of natural gas produced in June, more than a million MCF above what was produced in the previous month.

In June the state had 11,079 producing wells, another preliminary new all-time high. There were 10,902 producing wells in May. Seventy percent of the wells are now unconventional Bakken-Three Forks wells and the rest produce from legacy conventional pools, Helms said.

On Friday, 194 rigs were actively drilling in the North Dakota oil patch.

The number of well completions increased as weather impacts eased in June with significant rainfall on two days near Minot and one day near Dickinson, Helms said. However, he said there were still several days with wind speeds in excess of 35 mph and the wind speeds were too high for completion work.

The number of rigs actively drilling on federal surface in the Dakota Prairie Grasslands in western North Dakota has gone up to four, according to Helms.

He said activity on the Fort Berthold Reservation (on fee lands or lands not held in trust by the federal government) and trust lands) includes:

21 drilling rigs.

297,987 barrels of oil per day.

1,241 active wells.

156 wells waiting on completion.

312 approved drilling permits.

2,149 additional potential future wells.

Leasing activity in the state is very low and consisting mainly of renewals and top leases in the Bakken-Three Forks area, Helms said.

He said the percentage of gas flared remained at 28 percent as the new Tioga gas plant remained below full capacity because of delayed expansion of gas gathering from south of Lake Sakakawea. The historical high flared percent was 36 percent in September 2011.