North Dakota Oil Production Hits Record High


NEW YORK, Sept 13 (Reuters) - Oil production in North Dakota hit a new record high in July as oil companies brought more wells online once summer rains stopped, the state regulator said.

Output in July jumped by 55,000 barrels per day from the month before, to just below 875,000 bpd, monthly data issued by the North Dakota Industrial Commission's Oil and Gas Division showed on Friday.

Most of the new production came from the Bakken and Three Forks shale formations where drillers are using horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing (fracking) technologies to tap the state's massive oil resources.

Companies produced slightly more than 810,000 bpd of oil from the Bakken shale in July.

Output growth picks up pace every summer in North Dakota when warm weather allows for more drilling and completion work.

"A lot of (fracking) crews sat idle in May and June because it was wet and they couldn't get frack sand to the wells," said Lynn Helms, director of the commission's oil and gas division.

But more than a hundred wells were completed - fracked and connected to gathering lines - once the weather cleared at the end of June, he said.


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