Exploration & Production

Argentina needs a Dead Cow recipe

The ‘over-squeezed’ Marcellus shale could be a salutary tale for Argentina’s Vaca Muerta formation The ‘over-squeezed’ Marcellus shale could be a salutary tale for Argentina’s Vaca Muerta formation.
By The Wildcat 8 September 2017 0 27496
Well pad in Argentina's Vaca Muerta shale formation A well in the Vaca Muerta formation. (YPF)

Argentina has sensibly chosen to follow the American way on unconventional gas. But the Latin American protégé can also learn from its mentor’s challenges. The drilling formula for the mighty Marcellus shale, which is the exemplar for Argentina’s Vaca Muerta formation, is going stale. The rig count has doubled since mid-2016 in the newly coined Appalachia region – which combines the Marcellus and Utica shales – but operators are seeing diminishing returns. 

‘New well’ gas production per rig in the region continues to fall...