American Oil and Gas Reporter - April 2018 - 54

VISION2020
We currently are testing the mechanics of "simultaneous development" of three reservoirs in SCOOP, where we are drilling
Springer wells while simultaneously completing and flowing
back the underlying Sycamore and Woodford reservoirs in a
single unit. All is going well and preliminary indications are
that we have reduced drilling times by up to 50 percent, saving
approximately 20 percent on total well costs.
On the completion side, we never stop tweaking our stimulation
design to further improve recoveries and the value of our assets.
We recognize one size does not fit all and our teams embrace
the constant challenge to ensure we have the optimum design
for all of our assets. The Bakken is a great example of never
giving up on finding the right stimulation design. As mentioned
previously, the optimized stimulations we are using today have
increased recoveries and doubled the rates of return in the
Bakken. What is interesting is that the unit wells, or children
wells as they have been called, not only outperform the parent
well because of the improved stimulation technology, but the
production from the parent well is uplifted from the improved
stimulation used on offsetting unit wells. Essentially we are
"refracturing" the parent well for free.
Our commitment to getting full-unit density pilots completed
early in our plays also is paying off as we move into unit development in the SCOOP Springer and STACK Meramec oil reservoirs. Results from these density pilots provided the vision
needed to proceed with our plans for unit development with
confidence. Based on these results, we also introduced our unit
economic models for both the SCOOP Springer and STACK
Meramec oil during our fourth-quarter call in February.
One other area we are keenly interested in is the potential
for secondary recovery from our oil reservoirs. Geologic parameters of the Springer make it particularly attractive and we
have our sights on a pilot test in the near future. Likewise, there
are several pilot projects being conducted by the industry in the
Bakken, specifically with carbon dioxide, and we continue to
assess results from our CO2 pilot in the Elm Coulee Bakken
field in Montana.

Finally, can you share your thoughts on what
Q: the
unconventional revolution means to
America's energy future? It was, after all, independents such as Continental that pioneered shale
gas and tight oil plays. Those resources have made
the United States the world's top natural gas producer, and it is projected to soon achieve the same
status in crude oil. How high do you see U.S. oil
and gas production going through 2020? How
would you summarize the impact of shale gas and
tight oil on global markets today?
STARK: What can I say about the American energy renaissance
that hasn't already been said? It has transformed our industry,
created jobs, changed the geopolitical landscape and secured
our nation's energy future. Resulting low energy prices continue
to be a significant catalyst to America's economy and are directly
responsible for the return of the petrochemical industry to U.S.
54 THE AMERICAN OIL & GAS REPORTER

shores. Just imagine what the price of a gallon of gasoline would
be at the pump today, if not for the energy renaissance.
Likewise, exporting crude oil seemed unthinkable a few
short years ago, but today the United States is exporting close
to 2 million barrels of crude oil a day and building. Over the
past six months, Continental has exported 1.5 million barrels of
Bakken crude to Asia and the United Kingdom, and expects to
continue growing its exports as the appetite for high-quality
Bakken crude grows internationally.
Moreover, approximately 3 billion cubic feet of U.S. natural
gas is being exported as LNG every day, with projections that
LNG exports will triple over next three years. Pipeline exports
to Mexico also are growing and now amount to more than 4
Bcf/d. The U.S. clearly has re-established itself a leading global
energy producer.
Regarding crude oil production growth, I do not see supply
outpacing demand in 2018. Estimates of U.S. crude oil growth
range from 1 million to 1.5 million bbl/d from the sources I
have seen. Taking into consideration the capital discipline demanded by the market today, along with logistical challenges
and infrastructure constraints inherent in rapid expansions, I
believe domestic crude production growth will come in at the
low end of these projections. In fact, 2018 will stress-test the
industry's ability to grow production to meet the robust growth
of global demand, which we estimate to be in the range of 1.7
million-1.8 million barrels of total liquids a day this year.
From a purely technical standpoint, the ingenuity and tenacity
displayed by America's independent producers and service
companies to "crack the code" on resource plays is unmatched
in my 38 years in the business. And I must say that I am proud
that Continental has been a leader in cracking that code. Through
technology, we have discovered a whole new class of reservoir.
We are now able to harvest the source rocks that generated the
oil and natural gas reserves we have produced from conventional
reservoirs over the past century. These source beds and related
tight rocks are packed full of hydrocarbons and often cover
thousands of square miles.
People smarter than me say that up to 80 percent of the hydrocarbons generated remain in these rocks. That means the
size of the prize is huge, with reserves rivaling those in the
Middle East and Russia. In early 2015, the U.S. EIA estimated
the nation had 275 billion barrels of technically recoverable reserves, which would translate to 75 years of supply assuming
10 million bbl/d. No doubt these estimates will be revised
upward given the advances the industry has made since then.

MARCELLUS/UTICA MASTER
Range Resources pioneered the Marcellus
Q: Shale
in 2004 with the drilling of the Renz
No. 1 well in Washington County, Pa. Since that
discovery well, the Marcellus has become one of
the world's largest natural gas fields, and today accounts for about 40 percent of total U.S. dry gas
production. What trends do you see defining Mar-



American Oil and Gas Reporter - April 2018

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