New Permit Activity Weak in Ohio’s Utica

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Hilcorp Energy Co. secured four new horizontal well permits in the western Pennsylvania portion of the Utica shale during the week ended Dec. 12, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.

Hilcorp, the most prolific driller in the northern tier of the Utica shale, was issued four permits for the Savaet well pad in North Beaver Township in Lawrence County, just across the state line from Mahoning County.

No new permits were issued for nearby Mercer County, which borders Lawrence County to the north, according to the DEP.

Still, the number of permits issued last week in Lawrence County alone surpassed all of the permit activity across the entire Utica play in Ohio, records show.

Just three permits were issued to energy exploration companies last, according to newly data posted by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.

Ascent Resources received a permit for a single well in Belmont County; Chesapeake Exploration LLC was awarded a well permit in Jefferson County; and PDC Energy Inc. received a permit for a new horizontal well in Noble County, ODNR reported.

The rig count remained unchanged at 16 operating in the Utica compared to the previous week. This time last year, the rig count in the Utica hovered around 50 derricks.

To date, 2,097 permits have been issued in the Utica and 1,658 wells have been drilled. Of that number, 1,119 wells are in production.

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