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Oil Producers To Share Four Corners Data At Conference

FARMINGTON, N.M., Dec. 31, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- An energy conference scheduled for March 18 and 19, 2013, will feature a series of presentations about new drilling for shale oil in the Mancos Shale Formation of the Four Corners Region of Northwest New Mexico. The conference will be held at San Juan College in the Henderson Fine Arts Center.

"This is the Renaissance of the San Juan Basin," said conference organizer Dr. Daniel Fine, senior energy analyst with the New Mexico Center for Energy Policy. "We are seeing a revolution on the part of American technology in natural gas and shale oil recovery in shale formations."

The conference is titled, " San Juan Basin Energy Conference." The 2013 theme is "Recognition of the Mancos Shale as the next chapter in the American revolution of unconventional natural gas and oil technology leading to national energy independence in 2020." BP America, Chevron, Continental Resources, Encana, PNM and the U.S. Department of Energy are expected to make presentations at the conference.

In the past five years, U.S. oil and gas developers have coupled the new technology of horizontal drilling with the age-old practice of hydraulic fracturing – or fracking – to tap into previously locked-in unconventional shale gas and liquids, Fine said.

Drilling and exploration companies will present initial findings from recent activity in the Mancos Shale, which is estimated to contain 60 billion barrels of oil, with 6 billion barrels expected to be recovered, Fine said.

"There are so many companies active in the region," said Randy Pacheco, Dean of the School of Energy at San Juan College. "This conference is important for the Mancos Shale and U.S. development because we're bringing together many industry experts."

Encana Oil & Gas ( USA) Inc., a Canadian company, has partnered with a local independent producer – Dugan Production of Farmington – to drill several test wells into the Mancos Shale and continues to plan additional test wells. While Encana has taken the lead in initial exploration, other producers in the oil-and-gas industry have stakes in the region. Companies active in the region include ConocoPhillips, BP America, Williams and XTO.

"There's a great deal of interest from investment groups, analysts and banks," Fine said. "They will queue up to get information. We know companies are drilling because they have to do permitting, but what they're finding and producing is a work in progress. This conference is their forum to provide initial data."

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