From the pages of
Sublette Examiner
Volume 3, Number 4 - April 24, 2003
brought to you online by Pinedale Online

Questar: Independent meets growing gas need

Questar Corporation is an integrated natural gas company headquartered in Salt Lake City, with significant business interests in upstream exploration and production, interstate pipelines and downstream retail gas distribution.

It's one of the fastest growing gas producers in the country.

Questar's annual shareholders report for 2002 noted that over the past five years, Questar has delivered nearly 10 average annual growth in earnings per share and that its outlook for 2003 includes a major goal of accelerated drilling on the Pinedale Anticline.

According to the report, Questar Market Resources (QMR) subsidiaries Questar Exploration and Production and Wexpro have a combined 60 percent working interest in 14,800 acres on the anticline, with 275 to 300 potential low-risk-development well locations based on 40-acre spacing, with only 51 of these locations already drilled and completed. Questar has a production office in Pinedale that presently employs five people.

Questar plans to ramp up its drilling program to 25-30 wells per year from an average of 15 wells annually over the past three years. Questar plans to add rigs to the 2003 summer drilling program and develop most of its Pinedale acreage using multi-well pads to minimize surface disturbances, reduce rig movements, streamline completion operations, reduce costs and downtime and shorten well-connection times. A directional well costs approximately $500,000 more than a vertical well.

Questar is working with federal and state agencies to assess the environmental impact of winter drilling by directionally drilling up to six wells from one pad, with winter-long activity.The company reports that an accelerated drilling pace, including winter drilling, would enable Questar to develop its Pinedale acreage over a shorter duration and minimize impacts to wildlife.

During 2002, QMR significantly increased its production in the Pinedale Anticline area, drilling or participating in 23 gross wells with a 100-percent success rate, completing 21 as gas wells, with two wells drilling or waiting on completion at year-end. Gross productive capacity increased by 47 million cubic feet per day to more than 126 million cubic feet per day by year-end.

"A growing percentage of U.S. gas supply today comes from plays that didn't exist a decade ago," Questar President Keith Rattie told Congress recently.

"When it comes to innovation, the American oil and gas industry leads the rest of the world by a wide and growing margin."

Advances in the industry include improved methods of restoring land after the drilling rig has finished its work, Rattie said.

"It's time to allow access to high-potential federal land in the Rockies, off the East and West coasts, and in the eastern Gulf of Mexico. The industry has proven that our energy resources can be developed without harming the environment," Rattie said.

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