A line in IGas Annual Report and Accounts for 2016 reveals what we have already been able to work out, that drilling of a production well pad would tie up a drilling rig for between 12-24 months. That is quite a band width and is presumably a function of the number of wells to a pad, the strata or perhaps more worryingly the independence of the “independent well examiner” and more or less adherence to what might otherwise be deemed industry best practice by drilling contractors.
Whatever the reason it is obvious that local people in the vicinity of Tinker Lane site and those living on the HGV vehicle route are in for another 2 years of major disruption following the exploratory drilling phase, should the beast eventually be brought into production. Then add a year or so of major works to engineer a network of connecting pipework to the gas grid etc etc.
The Annual Report also perpetuates the myth that a production site will produce for “20 years or more”. Whilst ringing true for a conventional gas well, according to Lord Oxburgh, geologist and geophysicist, former Chairman of Shell “The flow rates of fracked shale gas wells halve in the first 12 months, 84% of fracking wells will become uneconomic in just 3 years”. Geology.com offers a generic graph allowing operators to gauge the production decline, reporting a drop in the first year down to around a third of initial gas flow. So wishful thinking on behalf of IGas and masks the need for the continual drilling of shale gas wells to keep in business.
However let us be positive, in line with the heady reports that fracking will spark a jobs revolution in Northern England we are pleased to report some early merchandising and job creation in the light of IGas’ revelation. Local people will be able to track the disruption of the production drilling phase at Tinker Lane on a special 2 year calendar, printed locally, a proof copy for 2018-2019 is attached. We are advised that a 20 year version is also available, but apparently few are buying into that.