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Drillers look for gas in the West, oil in the South.

Drillers Look For Gas In The West, Oil In The South

About 130 oil and gas drilling permits were issued in the state during the first six months of 1991, most in a few counties in west and south Arkansas.

Although companies are not required to record whether they are drilling for oil or gas, most drill for gas in west Arkansas.

Drillers in south Arkansas usually look for oil, although they may find gas in the process.

Twenty-four drilling permits were issued in Franklin County, making it the state's most active county for exploration.

Top Counties For Drilling Permit

January-June 21, 1991
Franklin 24
Sebastian 16
Union 16
Columbia 13
Johnson 13

Note: Companies sometimes obtain permits and never drill.

There were about 150 well-completion permits issued during the past six months. Franklin County also topped that list.

Drillers file completion reports when a well has "hit." Meanwhile, a permit to plug is requested when a dry hole is drilled or an old well no longer produces.

Top Counties For Well Completions

January-June 21, 1991
Franklin 19
Union 19
Lafayette 15
Sebastian 14
Crawford 13
Logan 11

Sonat Exploration of Fort Smith received the most drilling permits (20) and the most completions (17).

SEECO, a subsidiary of Arkansas-based Southwestern Energy Co., tied with Stephens Production for second place in the number of permits (10). Stephen Production reported 13 completions for the period, and SEECO reported six.

Officials at SEECO say that does not necessarily mean the company brought in fewer wells. About 75 percent of SEECO's Arkansas drilling efforts are successful, according to Brick Robinson, vice president.

Robinson explains that drillers don't always "complete" a well immediately after it hits. There is sometimes a lag in reporting completions. More than a dozen of the 150 completion reports filed in the first six months of 1991 were for "hits" in late 1990.

Exploration Companies With Most Well Completions

January-June 21, 1991
Sonat Exploration 17
Stephens Production 13
Fina Oil & Gas 7
Reynolds Drilling 5
Tom Brown 5

Carolyn Gibson Arkansas Business Staff
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No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1991 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:Arkansas Business Rankings
Author:Gibson, Carolyn
Publication:Arkansas Business
Date:Jul 1, 1991
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