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Noble Increases Production Guidance With Improving Wells Across Footprint

Noble Energy Inc. on Tuesday increased its third quarter guidance by 10,000 boe/d at the midpoint, primarily to reflect increasingly efficient production from its wells in the Denver-Julesburg (DJ) Basin.

The company said it expects to produce between 360,000 and 370,000 boe/d this quarter, up from its previously announced third quarter guidance of 345,000-365,000 boe/d. While the company dropped its rig count earlier this year from 10 in Colorado's DJ Basin to four, it said production from the play averaged 115,000 boe/d in July and August. Noble produced 108,000 boe/d there in 2Q2015.

"The expansions of natural gas processing in the greater Wattenberg has continued to unlock the productive capacity of our DJ Basin operations," said Executive Vice President of Operations Gary Willingham. "Production from our legacy vertical wells and older horizontal wells are benefiting from substantially reduced line pressures and improved third-party plant uptime." 

Noble said a 200 MMcf/d expansion at DCP Midstream Partners LP's Lucerne processing plant in Weld County, CO, has helped expand the company's natural gas processing capacity to 840 MMcf/d in the basin. That expansion entered service in late June.

But the company's production has also received a boost from the Marcellus Shale, Eagle Ford Shale, Permian Basin and its offshore assets overseas. In the Marcellus, where Noble set a company record of 427 MMcf/d of production in 2Q2015, it plans to idle its drilling program for the remainder of the year (see Shale Daily, Aug. 4). Noble's Eagle Ford and Permian assets were acquired after it completed the $2.1 billion purchase of Rosetta Resources Inc. in July, giving it more than 100,000 net acres in the plays, which is expected to help boost production by 15% annually.

Noble also said its assets in the Mediterranean Sea offshore of Israel set a record of 1 Bcf/d of natural gas production in August.

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