Neuquén reaches new records in gas and oil production » Digital Alert

Neuquén reaches new records in gas and oil production » Digital Alert
Neuquén reaches new records in gas and oil production » Digital Alert

In a context where the natural gas supply crisis has seriously affected Argentina, The province of Neuquén has achieved a historic mark in hydrocarbon production, driven mainly by the development of Vaca Muerta. This region has proven to be an inexhaustible source of resources, setting records that highlight its importance in the country’s energy matrix.

Historical record of gas production in Neuquén

In May, Neuquén reached an average natural gas production of 105.58 million cubic meters per day, according to the records of the Ministry of Energy of the Nation. This volume not only surpassed the previous record from August last year, which was 97 million cubic meters, but also inaugurated triple-digit values ​​in the region’s gas production. Compared to May of last year, current production shows an increase of 19.84%, highlighting the growing extractive capacity of Vaca Muerta.

This increase in gas production is largely due to the greater transportation capacity thanks to the Néstor Kirchner Gas Pipeline, operational since August 2023. The infrastructure has allowed production to be significantly increased, although gas distribution still faces geographical limitations, preventing that the greatest production reaches all regions of the country.

Oil production: another record for Neuquén

The Neuquén oil segment also reached historic figures in May, with a production of 394,010 barrels per day, which represents an increase of 1.1% compared to the previous month and 20.4% compared to May 2023. This sustained growth is due to the continued development of key areas such as Bajada del Palo Este y Oeste, La Calera, La Amarga Chica and Loma Campana. Shale oil production constitutes more than 90% of the total, reflecting the predominance of unconventional oil in the region.

Factors behind the increase in production

The increase in gas and oil production in Neuquén responds to several key factors. Firstly, gas demand has increased due to low temperatures, leading companies to maximize extraction to satisfy domestic consumption. Second, transportation infrastructure, such as the Néstor Kirchner Gasduct, has played a crucial role in allowing greater volumes of gas transportation.

The areas that have contributed the most to this increase include Fortín de Piedra, Aguada de la Arena, Aguada Pichana Oeste, Sierra Chata, El Mangrullo and La Calera. These areas have seen a significant increase in production, reflecting Vaca Muerta’s potential to maintain its growth rate.

The role of companies in the expansion of Vaca Muerta

The operating companies in Vaca Muerta have been fundamental in achieving these records. YPF has led operations with the largest number of wells drilled, followed by other companies such as Vista, Tecpetrol, PAE and Shell. The acceleration in drilling and connecting wells has been essential to maintain production growth.

In the first four months of the year, Vaca Muerta recorded an average of 31 wells connected per month, surpassing last year’s monthly average of 20 wells. This increase in drilling activity has been possible thanks to improvements in infrastructure and constant investment in the region.

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