Chesapeake cements positions in US gas plays

By OGJ editors
HOUSTON, Feb. 17
-- Chesapeake Energy Corp., Oklahoma City, said its fourth quarter 2009 production averaged 2.44 bcfd of natural gas and 29,750 b/d of oil and natural gas liquids.

The company averaged 104 operated and 60 nonoperated rigs in 2009 and drilled 1,148 gross operated and 1,126 gross nonoperated wells.

Chesapeake plans to average 32 rigs in 2010 to drill 175 wells in the Marcellus shale, where it currently runs 24 operated rigs. Land position is 1.6 million net acres in West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and New York for Chesapeake and a further 590,000 net acres for its partner, Statoil ASA.

Chesapeake has drilled and completed 56 operated horizontal Marcellus wells since Jan. 1, 2008, and its net production averaged 45 MMcfd of gas equivalent (MMcfed) in the 2009 fourth quarter. It plans to exit 2010 at 270 MMcfed (515 MMcfed gross operated) and 2011 at 450 MMcfed (855 MMcfed gross operated).

Chesapeake holds 535,000 net acres and its partner Plains Exploration & Production Co. owns a further 110,000 net acres in the Haynesville shale play, where the two have drilled and completed 150 Chesapeake-operated horizontal wells.

Chesapeake’s net Haynesville production is 375 MMcfed. The company operates 38 rigs and expects to average 41 rigs in 2010 to drill 200 net wells. Chesapeake expects to exit 2010 at 640 MMcfed (970 MMcfed gross operated) and 2011 at 810 MMcfed (1.23 bcfd of gas equivalent [bcfed] gross operated).

Chesapeake produces 340 MMcfed net in the Fayetteville shale play and expects to maintain 320 MMcfed (460 MMcfed gross operated) through the end of 2011.

It holds 455,000 net acres in the Fayetteville core area and expects to average 12 operated rigs in 2010 to drill 110 net wells with its partner, BP America Inc.

Chesapeake produces 515 MMcfed net (950 MMcfed gross operated) in the Fort Worth basin Barnett shale play and expects to end 2010 at 590 MMcfed net (1.12 bcfed gross operated) and 2011 at 665 MMcfed (1.26 bcfed gross operated).

Chesapeake plans to operate 28 rigs to drill 300 net Barnett wells in 2010 on its 220,000 net acres with its partner, Total E&P USA Inc.

Chesapeake holds 120,000 net acres and produces 110 MMcfed net (200 MMcfed gross operated) in the Anadarko basin Colony Granite Wash play in Custer and Washita counties, Okla.

It plans to average seven rigs to drill 40 net wells this year and exit 2010 at 190 MMcfed net (350 MMcfed gross operated) and 2011 at 230 MMcfed net (420 MMcfed gross operated). Colony’s high oil and NGL content makes it the company’s second highest rate-of-return play.

The company holds 70,000 net acres in the Anadarko basin Texas Panhandle Granite Wash play in Hemphill, Wheeler, and Roberts counties in Texas. It plans to operate four rigs to drill 30 net wells and exit 2010 at 125 MMcfed net (180 MMcfed gross operated) and 2011 at 130 MMcfed net (185 MMcfed gross operated). This is the company’s highest rate-of-return play due to high oil and NGL content.

The company has used and developed reliable geologic and engineering technology to book proved undeveloped reserves more than one location from production in the Barnett and Fayetteville shales, as permitted by new federal regulations, but has booked only direct offset locations in all other asset areas.

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