Noble Energy Commits 45% of Capital Program to Niobrara – A Premier Oil Play

Noble Energy Extended Reach Lateral Results - UBS Global Oil and Gas Conference - May 2013

Noble Energy Extended Reach Lateral Results – Niobrara Decline Curve – UBS Global Oil and Gas Conference – May 2013

Company accelerating to drill 500 wells/yr by 2016 with potentials of 1 MMBoe EUR from 9000 foot extended reach laterals in NE Colorado

On May 22nd at the UBS Global Oil and Gas Conference Noble Energy presented the results and future plans of their Niobrara drilling program.  The company now plans to commit 45% of their capital program or $1.7 billion dollars to exploration and development in the Niobrara play. Noble estimates it will be drilling up to 500 wells a year by 2016 on its properties as they expand into Northern Colorado.

Their drilling results from their East Pony field located in Northern Colorado are yielding 80% oil and 5% NGL  The companies efforts with extended reach laterals has payed off with an estimated potential yield 1 MMBOE EUR coming from their 9000 ft laterals.

Noble now considers the entire Niobrara (A, B, C bench and Smoky Hill) and the Codell to be productive, allowing for a minimum of 16 wells (40 acre) per section. The company is currently testing additional high density patterns that will allow up to 32 wells per section. Oil in place is now estimated at 74 MMBoe per section.

Read the entire Noble Energy Presentation

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3 Responses to Noble Energy Commits 45% of Capital Program to Niobrara – A Premier Oil Play

  1. Giddyup says:

    I presume this is very good news? What does 74 MMboe mean? I was thinking that is 74 million barrels, but that can’t be right. Also, when they say they can put up to 32 wells on a section, would that generally be on one giant pad site, or would they likely “clutter-up” a section?

    • RockPick says:


      I think Noble’s news is excellent for the play. I believe they are executing very well and taking a very methodical approach to their exploration/development. It seems to be paying off. Yes, 74 MMboe is “million”. A very impressive number that should turn a few heads on wall street. Oh to be a mineral owner up there! As far as well spacing in a section goes, Noble is big on consolidation of wellheads. I presume they will take that approach from a logistical as well as environmental perspective. In my opinion, the days of shotgun well patterns in a section are over.


      • Giddyup-
        My engineering company designs production facilities for Noble. They have made a huge effort to reduce their impact on many levels, including reduced land impact. They are developing several sections of land from just a few facilities and have reduced impact on the order of 80% from tradition methods.

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