The Texas Railroad Commission reported this week that a record-high 830 natural gas wells were completed during July, breaking the previous all-time high set in March of this year. The numbers are the highest on record in more than 30 years.
Despite the strong activity, “we have yet to see an increase in the production figures” for the state, said Railroad Commissioner Charles Matthews during a conference on Wednesday in Austin, TX. But “I am hopeful that these completion numbers are an indicator of increased supply and moderate prices.”
Texas has been and still is the country’s largest producer of natural gas, averaging 5.7 Tcf of gas per year and representing nearly 30% of U.S. production, according to the state agency. At the same time, Texas is both the largest consumer of natural gas at 3.9 Tcf annually and the largest exporter of natural gas, the commission said. The state regularly exports about 1.8 Tcf per year, mostly to northeastern and midwestern states, and more recently to Mexico.
Adding to Texas’s gas appetite is the growing number of new gas-fired merchant power plants that have been built in the state over the past five years, the commission said. More than 25,000 MW of new generating capacity has been added, the equivalent of about 50 new power plants. Another 5,000 MW is under construction and will be online over the next year and a half.
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