Montney Part 2: Alberta vs. BC

(Part of a joint series combining the power of VISAGE visual analytics software with geoLOGIC’s value-added data live from the gDC)

One of the ways we have decided to look at Montney production in this series is to compare what has happened in the Alberta Montney play over time to what has happened in BC. Alberta has been slow and steady whereas the BC production has sky-rocketed over the last couple of years. This is to be expected given the growth in horizontal drilling. Here are just some of the stats we have come up with:

  • BC production rates surpassed Alberta for the first time in Feb 2009 and continued to grow to 3.5 times that of Alberta in May 2011
  • However, Alberta is ahead in terms of the total gas produced to date in the Montney, accounting for 69.4% of the 2,456 bcf of cumulative gas produced
  • If both provinces were to sustain the May 2011 rates it would only take until September 2014 for BC’s cumulative production to surpass Alberta’s


  • May 2011 production summary:
    801 horizontal wells producing 1306 mmcf/day (89.6% of production) 
    455 vertical wells producing 87 mmcf/day (6.6% of production)
    266 deviated wells producing 60 mmcf/day (4.1% of production)
    26 crooked wells producing 5 mmcf/day (0.3% of production)


The first Montney wells came on stream in July 1977 in Alberta. The most pronounced jump in production (in Alberta) started in November 1995 growing to 274 mmcf/day a year later. Total Montney production has grown to 1457 mmcf/day in May 2011.

  • Total number of Montney wells that have produced = 2261 (excludes commingled wells)
  • 89% of that production came on stream since Sept 2008
  • First horizontal wells came on stream in Sept 2001 in Alberta
  • 70% of the horizontal wells are in BC
  • 21% of current (May 2011) Montney gas production came on stream in 2011
  • 62% of current (May 2011) Montney gas production came on stream since Jan 2010
  • Biggest growth in Production was in 2010, contributing 635 mmcf/day
  • Total BC Production in May 2011 (884 wells) = 1130 mmcf/day (78%)
  • Total AB Production May 2011 (778 wells) = 327 mmcf/day (22%)

  • Cumulative Montney gas produced to date = 2,456 bcf
  • Cumulative Alberta Montney gas produced to date = 1,704 bcf (69.4% of total)
  • Cumulative BC Montney gas produced to date = 752 bcf (30.6% of total)

Stay tuned over the next week or two for more on the Montney. As always we welcome your feedback and suggestions about what you would like to see in upcoming blogs.


Want to know what happens when the price of gas changes? Is Montney production affected? Have a look at the VISAGE | News blog for one last piece of the puzzle

About Natalie St. Hilaire

Yoga fanatic, software sales rep, own a cat
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