Wyoming’s federal drilling stats

When reporting on my latest story, Are Feds Slowing Oil and Gas Permitting?, I’d asked Wyoming Bureau of Land Management officials for their most recent oil and gas permitting and drilling figures. I got the stats a little late, but will share them with you now. An “application for permit to drill,” or APD, represents one well. Years represented are the BLM’s fiscal years.

— 2010 – 1,606 APDs approved, 1,280 wells drilled

— 2009 – 2,040 APDs approved, 1,450 wells drilled

— 2008 – 3,082 APDs approved, 2,421 wells drilled

— 2007 – 3,762 APDs approved, 2,309 wells drilled

— 2006 – 3,848 APDs approved, 2,774 wells drilled

Total APDs approved: 14,338

Total wells drilled: 10,234

So, during the past five years, the oil and gas industry has received more federal oil and gas permits in Wyoming than it has drilled (a surplus of 4,104). A federal APD is valid for 2 years. Also, many of these APDs were issued with stipulations such as seasonal restrictions for wildlife and habitat protection, which means a company may have a limited time-frame to drill the well during the year. Companies can — and often do — request an extension beyond the 2-year life of an APD.

— Contact Dustin Bleizeffer at 307-577-6069 or dustin@wyofile.com.

Dustin Bleizeffer is a Report for America Corps member covering energy and climate at WyoFile. He has worked as a coal miner, an oilfield mechanic, and for 25 years as a statewide reporter and editor primarily...

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