North Dakota oil production drops in January ‘13 because of bad weather

January production dropped to 738,022 BOPD from revised 770,111 in December and preceding high of 749,095 in October.

Comments follow the graph:

 1-13 production

 

Do you see a lull in production levels around the first of the year in the above graph? January/February 2012 looks to be about the only year there wasn’t a visible impact from weather.

This month’s directors report, available here, attributes this production drop to a blizzard and week of sub-zero temps. Anyone who has lived in the north country knows what that does to wind chill. Now picture what happens to the efficiency of drilling crews who obiously work outside for their entire shift.

March has seen a few bad storms blow through with the airport closed a couple times, if my recollection is correct.

Amy Dalrymple at Oil Patch Dispatch quotes the director on what weather will do to production levels in the next few months:

Helms said he anticipates that the state’s monthly oil production numbers will continue to go up and down through May. February was a strong month, but recent winter storms will likely mean a drop in March production, Helms said.

The month of May will bring spring road restrictions that in some counties may severely restrict truck transportation, Helms said.

Starting in June, North Dakota should again see consistent increases in monthly oil production, Helms said.

That means March and May will probably see slow growth in production.

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