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Natural gas, oil drilling and completions up more than 35 percent over 2017

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WASHINGTON, April 19, 2018 –  API today released its quarterly well completion report for the first quarter of 2018 showing that natural gas and oil drilling and completions rose more than 35 percent over 2017 levels signaling the strength of the U.S. natural gas and oil industry. In addition, the success rate for exploration of natural gas and oil was more than 60 percent, the highest rate since 2009.

“Today’s report shows demonstrable progress and a strong future for the U.S. as the world’s top producer and refiner of natural gas and oil,” said API Chief Economist Dean Foreman. “With strong activity and continued technological gains in natural gas and oil production, we need to ensure that our nation’s infrastructure keeps pace so that consumers, workers, and the environment can continue to experience the benefits of increased American energy production. Promoting our nation’s energy infrastructure is a $1.3 trillion proposition that could support one million jobs per year through 2035 and help our economy to grow, make environmental progress, and increase our national security with abundant energy production.”

API’s latest Quarterly Well Completion Report highlights that in the first quarter of 2018:

  • The U.S. natural gas and oil industry experienced a 35 percent increase in drilled footage and a 37 percent increase in well completions, compared with Q1 2017.
  • The Exploratory success rate in Q1 2018 was above 60% and at its highest since 2009.
  • For Exploration (as opposed to Development) wells, completions rose by 29 percent, while drilled footage increased by 45 percent, which suggests continued technological progress in Exploration.

For more information and to subscribe to the complete 2018 API Quarterly Well Completion Report, First Quarter, please contact API's primary distributor, IHS, at 1-800-854-7179, or visit their website at

API is the only national trade association representing all facets of the oil and natural gas industry, which supports 10.3 million U.S. jobs and nearly 8 percent of the U.S. economy. API’s more than 625 members include large integrated companies, as well as exploration and production, refining, marketing, pipeline, and marine businesses, and service and supply firms. They provide most of the nation’s energy and are backed by a growing grassroots movement of more than 40 million Americans.


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