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US Sees Biggest Increase in Gas Reserves in 35 Years

Source: www.gulfoilandgas.com 9/27/2006, Location: North America

U.S. natural gas reserves grew by 6% in 2005, the largest annual increase in gas reserves in 35 years, according to a government report released Tuesday. The amount of onshore gas reserves for 2005 has increased for the seventh year in a row and made up for the 10% decrease in Gulf of Mexico federal offshore reserves, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration's "Advance Summary: U.S. Crude Oil, Natural Gas, and Natural Gas Liquids Reserves 2005 Annual Report."

The largest gas reserve increases came from Texas and Colorado, according to the report. Texas is home to the vast Barnett Shale gas play, which contains an estimated 2.1 trillion cubic feet of gas. Several large companies drill in the area which extends west 5,000 miles from Dallas. Devon Energy Corp (DVN), EnCana Corp (ECA), EOG Resources (EOG), XTO Energy Inc. (XTO) and Chesapeake Energy (CHK), which has plans to drill for gas under the Dallas-Fort Worth Airport, under which the Barnett Shale extends, all hold wells in the gas play.

Total U.S. gas production declined 4% in 2005 from gas trapped in wells after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita hit the Gulf Coast, the report said. The Gulf accounts for about 20% of all U.S. dry gas production, which was 80% shut-in after the hurricanes. Before the hurricanes, gas production had been declining about 10% a year in the Gulf of Mexico, the report added.

Crude oil reserves went up in 2005 for the first time in three years, according to the report, with two of the four largest oil-producing states, Texas and California, reporting increases.

Montana reported the largest increase in crude oil reserves due to the development of the Bakken Formation in the Williston Basin, the report added.

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Related Articles: Accounting, Statistics  Acquisitions and Divestitures  Asset Portfolio Management  Economics/Financial Analysis  General  Insurance  Investment  Mergers and Acquisitions  Risk Management 


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