Wood Mackenzie analysts comment that the Springer shale play, often to as the Goddard shale play, is expected to grow inventory and reserves for operators already drilling in the Woodford shale play in the South-Central Oklahoma Oil Province (SCOOP).
Wood Mackenzie views the Springer shale play as an opportunity for operators to capture upside from stacked laterals in part of the basin where the Woodford is relatively thin, while evidencing that operators continue to gain traction from new unconventional technologies in their bid to rekindle the region's once prolific fields.
Using its new North America Well Analysis Tool, the company reviews the play to identify the four signposts that will influence its potential over the next 12 to 24 months:
1. Well repeatability: Continental Resources has released IP data for 11 wells which are highly concentrated in a handful of sections yet coming online at widely variable rates. The ability to keep laterals within the target zone and take advantage of natural fracture patterns will be pivotal to mastering the play's variable geology.
2. Production decline rates: Initial type curves indicate shallow decline rates relative to other shale and tight oil plays. Closely monitoring production data will be necessary to confirm the 940 mboe EUR and 100%+ IRR that Continental claims.
3. Offset well performance: Some early Springer shale wells have been drilled and completed in sections with currently producing Woodford horizontals. Any prolonged periods of abnormal production declines in those wells would reduce the ability to increase well inventory vertically through the stratigraphic column, removing a key value driver of leasehold in the area as well as the wider Mid-Continent.
4. Midstream infrastructure: Initial data suggests that the oil-weighted Springer shale type curve should not lead to any additional gas processing constraints due to recently announced expansions in the region from Enable and ONEOK. However, the expected increase in crude and condensate flow to Cushing has the potential to contribute to temporary price blow-outs similar to those seen in the Permian earlier this summer.