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Stripper Wells – Are They Useful?

2 min read
Stripper Wells – Are They Useful?

Stripper wells, also known as marginal wells are those wells that are on the verge of the end of their economical life and produce a very low supply of gas or oil. While many oil producers abandon stripper wells, sometimes they end up doing it earlier than necessary. By the end of 1990’s, somewhere around 140,000 of these wells were abandoned which approximately had around one-third or two-third of their total oil reserve still remaining. The major reason of this abandonment was the low market prices of oil in the world. The lack of proper well monitoring system was another reason why oil producers were unable to determine the right quantity of oil being abandoned.

Today, when oil prices in the world market have reached an ultimate high, there is an increased interest among oil producers to reinvest in these stripper wells. However, reclaiming these wells now can be quite expensive. Only if the oil prices stay at their elevated level for some years, it can be considered as a worthy investment. According to an estimate, crude oil reserves equaling 110 million barrels still remain in the marginal wells that were abandoned. Oil producers who are speculating to reclaim their wells can avoid wasting a lot of their investment if they use the right well monitoring system first to determine the quantity of oil in the wells.

Even today, more than 78% of oil wells in the USA have been classified as marginal wells that contribute 15% in the total oil production of the US. By finding a right way of monitoring wells, the producers can ensure that these wells are being used to their maximum potential. If these wells are abandoned prematurely, the losses would account up to a large sum. Not only that, but also the US would have to rely on more oil importing to fulfill the demand of oil in the country.

Monitoring wells today is much less expensive than it was before and therefore, it is easier to get a well monitoring system beforehand. If invested correctly, the abandoned marginal wells can produce large oil reserves that can increase the oil production level of the country. Since importing oil is getting expensive each day, this can be a major turnaround for oil producers.

The situation is slightly better with natural gas wells. However, the number of stripper gas wells is also on the rise and there is an increasing concern about their early abandonment. Before the producers think of giving up these wells, they should first consider getting efficient well monitoring systems.

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