WSJ: Permian Nat Gas Output Surging, Could Add to Glutby Will Brackett
The oil-rich Permian Basin is emerging as a major source of new natural gas, a development that could deepen an existing glut and pressure gas prices for years.
The West Texas region has become the most prolific spot for horizontal oil drilling and fracking. The new oil wells also produce natural gas, making it a nearly free byproduct that energy companies can then sell on top of the more-sought-after crude.
Gas production in the Permian basin is likely to triple by 2020 from its 2010 levels, analysts say. The region is poised to rival new gas output from the Appalachian Marcellus, the country’s biggest gas producing region.
Businesses and investment firms are earmarking billions for new pipeline connections to take away gas so drillers can keep pumping oil.