Production in the Permian Basin continues to exceed predictions and will push beyond 3.8 million barrels of oil per day in January 2019, the U.S. Energy Information Administration said in its monthly Drilling Productivity Report.
The EIA, which had anticipated Permian production of more than 3.6 MMbbl/d in December in its November update, now expects production for the month to exceed 3.7 MMbbl/d. For the first month of 2019, the EIA projected that the Permian will surpass a daily production average of 3.8 MMbbl/d for the first time ever, even with a continuing pipeline shortfall that will plague the region for much of the coming year. Gas production in the Permian will also reach record levels, with the EIA predicting more than 12.7 Bcf/d in January 2019.
The EIA expects the Bakken Shale to set a new production record in January 2019, but the play's rate of growth appears to be flagging. The federal agency projects daily production of 1.46 MMbbl/d in the first month of the year, up from 1.44 MMbbl/d in December. The Bakken broke the 1.4 MMbbl/d barrier in September, but EIA data shows production increases since then have slowed.
While growth in the Bakken is slowing, production in the Eagle Ford Shale of South Texas seems to be picking up steam. The EIA projects oil production of approximately 1.43 MMbbl/d in January 2019, which would be the play's highest production level in three years. Gas production is expected to approach all-time record levels, with an estimated daily average of 7.3 Bcf/d.
Appalachia remains the nation's largest gas producer by a wide margin, with the EIA expecting the region to surpass production of 31 Bcf/d in December and nearly 31.5 Bcf/d in January 2019.