Energy Central Professional


Gas extraction falls 26% in the Northeast

CE Noticias Financieras  


    So far during the current federal administration, natural gas production in the northeast of the country has collapsed by more than a quarter, according to records from the Ministry of Energy itself.

    According to its most recent comparable data, in the first 11 months of 2022, extraction in that region - made up of Coahuila, Nuevo León and Tamaulipas - averaged 470.8 million cubic feet per day (mmpcd), a volume 25.6 percent lower than the 632.8 million in the comparable period of 2018.

    In the first 11 months of 2018, before the 4T government began, the region's share in the extraction of "dry gas" or not associated to crude oil production in the whole Country was 60.3 percent and by last year it dropped to 40.4 percent.

    The 470.8 mmpcd mentioned for 2022 in northeastern Mexico "pales" in comparison to the 6.2 thousand mmpcd produced in the same period in the neighboring Eagle Ford basin, Texas, which shows the amount of resources that are being left untapped.

    Specialists note that the reasons for the drop in gas extraction in northeastern Mexico range from the loss of interest of investors due to the low international prices that this hydrocarbon has reached, to the administrative postures of the current government.

    Amado Villarreal, director of the Nuevo Leon Energy Cluster, pointed out that in legal terms it is possible to explore and exploit dry gas in the country, however the energy policy has caused a drop in its activity.

    "The current Administration has not favored this sector for investment purposes, either from Pemex or from private parties.

    "The rounds that we had were stopped since the beginning of this Government, besides the refusals of permits by the National Hydrocarbons Commission (CNH) and the Energy Regulatory Commission (CRE)", he pointed out.

    He pointed out that the authorities have argued that their refusals have been to protect the environment, since the dry gas extractions are carried out with hydraulic drilling or fracking.

    However, he said, the Administration has been incongruent, since Pemex uses this technique on the high seas.

    "This technology has a little more than 20 years of maturity and is used in the United States, mainly in Texas, which has allowed the neighboring country to go from being a net energy importer to being an exporter today.

    "Regardless of whether investors want to invest or not, what has held back is the administrative position.

    "The main developer of fracking in Mexico is Pemex, as it applies it in the oil fields in the Gulf of Mexico," he highlighted.

    Deepens low...

    In northeastern Mexico, natural gas production not associated with crude oil production has fallen year after year during the current administration.

    (Millions of cubic feet per day in the first 11 months of each year)

    18 632.8

    19 620.2

    20 593.0

    21 495.8

    22 470.8

    Prepared by EL NORTE with data from the Ministry of Energy.


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