MDU ResourcesGroup, Inc. (NYSE:MDU) has announced that its indirect wholly owned subsidiary, Fidelity Exploration & Production Company has completed a successful exploration test on its 75,000 net acres in the Paradox Basin. Following two weeks of production, the Cane Creek Unit No. 26-2H well was tested at a stabilized rate of 647 barrels of oil per day and 561 mcf of natural gas per day through a 7/64 inch choke with a flowing pressure exceeding 3400 psi. The well is flowing from a short unstimulated horizontal section. The well production rate is being significantly restricted to manage production operations, gather performance data and minimize natural gas flaring.
"This well is significant on its own and provides the basis from which we can establish a very large and profitable growth area for our company" said Kent Wells, president and chief executive officer of Fidelity. "The potential of this play appears significant and would make it a key component of Fidelity's growth strategy as well as provide business opportunities for other MDU subsidiaries as it relates to pipelines and construction activity."
Fidelity drilled the Cane Creek No. 26-2H well to a total depth of 8,685 feet, including a 1,945-foot lateral that was cased and subsequently perforated over a 116 foot interval at the end of the lateral. While it is too early to establish reserve potential for the well, a well drilled five miles to the southeast during the 1960s has produced over 1 million barrels of oil and a well seven miles northwest drilled in the 1990s has produced over 600,000 barrels of oil. Initial production rates from the 26-2H well are very encouraging; however, further data is required to give a reasonable estimate of ultimate recovery.
In addition, Fidelity has drilled its second horizontal Cane Creek well, the Cane Creek Unit No. 18-1H, to a total depth of 9,272 feet, including a 1,154-foot lateral. This well will be completed across a 900 foot horizontal interval and should be put on production during May. Fidelity plans to drill additional Paradox wells in 2012 to further advance the appraisal process and commence the development phase.
"The initial success in our Paradox Basin asset adds to the momentum of our oil production growth and reinforces the strategy we put in place last year" said Terry D. Hildestad, president and chief executive officer of MDU Resources. "With five rigs now running in the Bakken and this recent development in the Paradox, the prospect of significant and sustainable oil growth over the coming years looks very encouraging."
The information in this release includes certain forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. The forward-looking statements contained in this release, including statements by executive management of MDU Resources and Fidelity, are expressed in good faith and are believed by the company to have a reasonable basis. Nonetheless, actual results may differ materially from the projected results expressed in the forward-looking statements. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements include the fluctuations in crude oil and natural gas prices; fluctuations in commodity price basis differentials; drilling successes in natural gas and oil operations; the timely receipt of necessary permits and approvals; the ability to contract for or to secure necessary drilling rig contracts and to retain employees to drill for and develop reserves; other risks incidental to the operation of oil and natural gas wells; and the effects on operations of extensive environmental laws and regulations. For a discussion of other important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements, refer to Item 1A – Risk Factors in MDU Resources' most recent Form 10-K.
About MDU Resources
MDU Resources Group, Inc., a member of the S&P MidCap 400 index, provides value-added natural resource products and related services that are essential to energy and transportation infrastructure, including regulated utilities and pipelines, exploration and production, and construction materials and services companies. For more information about MDU Resources, see the company's Web site at www.mdu.com or contact the Investor Relations Department at email@example.com.
MDU Resources Group, Inc.
Phyllis A. Rittenbach, 701-530-1057
director - investor relations
Rick Matteson, 701-530-1700
director of communications and public affairs