The U.S. natural gas rig count finished flat at 99 for the week ended Friday (Oct. 8), while continued expansion in the oil patch lifted the combined domestic tally five units higher to finish at 533, according to the latest data from Baker Hughes Co. (BKR).

rigs Oct 8

A net gain of five oil-directed rigs in the United States for the week put the combined domestic tally at nearly double the 269 rigs active in the year-earlier period. Land drilling increased by seven week/week to offset a two-rig decline in offshore drilling. Horizontal rigs increased by nine, offsetting a four-rig decline in vertical units, according to the BKR numbers, which are based partly on data from Enverus.

The Canadian rig count climbed two units week/week to end at 167, up from 80 at this time last year. Four natural gas-directed rigs were added there, partially offset by a two-rig decline in oil-directed drilling.

Broken down by play, the Permian led with a three-rig increase for the week, bringing its total to 266 rigs, more than twice the 130 rigs running there a year ago. Elsewhere among plays, the Eagle Ford and Marcellus shales each added a rig to their respective totals, while one rig exited in the Utica Shale.

In the state-by-state breakdown, Texas saw a net increase of four rigs, while West Virginia added two. California and Oklahoma each added a rig week/week, while Louisiana, Ohio and Pennsylvania each dropped one rig, according to BKR.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) released its updated International Energy Outlook earlier in the week, and the report predicts continued growth in world energy demand and global oil and natural gas production through 2050.

The agency predicted a nearly 50% increase in global energy use from 2020 to 2050. This is primarily a result of projected economic and population growth for nations outside of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), particularly in non-OECD Asia.

Growth in both oil and natural gas production is expected to coincide with the rising energy demand, according to EIA.

Global emissions also rise through 2050 in the latest projections despite regional policies aimed at curbing them. Greater adoption of renewable energy and increased energy efficiency will serve to slow — but not stop — emissions growth, according to the agency.