Houston-based Noble Energy plans to bring back by the end of July most of the oil production it had curtailed in the second quarter in response to the plunge in oil demand and oil prices, becoming the latest U.S. producer to restart production it had shut in.
In an update on Q2 to the market, the company said on Thursday that it expected to bring back the majority of curtailed volumes by the end of July 2020, thanks to higher oil prices and significant improvements to operating costs.
In the second quarter, Noble Energy’s curtailments averaged around 11,000 barrels of oil per day (bpd), totaling 32,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boe/d) on a net basis.
The company’s U.S. onshore oil production capacity averaged 124,000 bpd in the second quarter, of which 113,000 bpd was sold, and 11,000 bpd curtailed, reflecting strong base and wedge performance from the DJ and Delaware Basins.
With the announcement on restoring most of its production, Noble Energy becomes the latest U.S. oil company to bring back output.
U.S. oil firms are estimated to have curtailed around 2 million bpd of crude oil production in May after prices plunged and demand crashed in the pandemic.
In the middle of June, Continental Resources – which had shut in 70 percent of its output – said it expects to partially begin resuming production but still expects to curtail approximately 50 percent of its operated oil production.
ConocoPhillips also said in June it expects to start bringing back in July part of the oil production it had curtailed in the second quarter.
In the middle of June, analysts and crude oil buyers told Reuters that they expected U.S. firms to have restored by the end of June around 500,000 bpd of the 2 million bpd previously curtailed production.