(Bloomberg) – Alberta’s oil and gas producers have drilled more wells this year than they did in 2021 as companies try to take advantage of soaring prices, data shows. ‘Alberta Energy Regulator.
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A total of 6,563 wells have been completed this year with more than two months remaining, compared to 6,166 last year. This is the maximum since more than 10,000 were drilled in 2014, according to data published on the Petrinex website.
Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. and Tamarack Valley Energy Ltd. were the most active drillers in the province, according to the data. Conventional heavy oil fields around the Slave Lake area, including Marten Hills and Nipisi, were among the most targeted areas.
Drilling was boosted by oil’s rise above $100 a barrel following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine earlier this year. US natural gas prices also topped $10 per million British thermal units for the first time since 2008.
The increase in activity came as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government struggles to balance the goal of reducing carbon emissions with supplying the global market with fossil fuels. The prime minister acknowledged in an interview with Bloomberg this week that his government’s carbon price “takes some time” to have an impact on emissions.
The amount of drilling in Alberta has never recovered to the levels seen before the oil price crash eight years ago. Previously, companies routinely drilled more than 10,000 wells a year.
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