Oil production in North Dakota hit 977,061 barrels per day (bopd) in March. Looking at the top of the trend line takes a bit of care. The initial report for November 2012 was 973,280 bopd. When another dozen wells reported results, the average production was 977,599 in November. The updates increased production data by 4,219 bopd. That means the March data is the record high for the initial report, but is still about 500 bopd behind the updated record high.
Here is a graph of the production with updated data, not the initial reports:
The director’s report indicates that 977K bopd is below the actual capacity in March. Weather was lousy:
March began with 2-3 days of temperatures well below zero, add to that 7-12 days with wind speeds too high for completion work, and then 8 inches of snow on the last day of the month.
That holds back drilling and completion.
In addition, a number of wells weren’t producing because the natural gas couldn’t be captured.
There were still approximately 50 wells shut in for the Tioga gas plant conversion in an attempt to minimize flaring
If those wells had been online, the production for March would have been higher.
As the cold, windy, snowy weather improves and roads dry out, I expect the drilling, completion, and production will get back to the growth curve we saw last year.