EQT Corporation (NYSE: EQT) today announced the Company’s 2014 capital expenditure (CAPEX) forecast of $2.4 billion. The CAPEX forecast includes $1.9 billion for EQT Production, $475 million for EQT Midstream, and the remainder for other corporate items. Funding will be provided by cash-on-hand at year-end, which includes proceeds from the sale of Equitable Gas Company, and cash generated from operations.
EQT’s 2014 CAPEX excludes CAPEX for EQT Midstream Partners, LP (NYSE: EQM), an entity controlled by EQT Corporation and consolidated in EQT’s financial statements. EQT Midstream Partners announced its 2014 financial and CAPEX forecast today in a separate news release, which can be found at
"The 2014 CAPEX program is designed to profitably accelerate the development of our expansive Marcellus position and will result in significant volume growth in 2015. It includes capital to continue the growth of our midstream footprint, and to re-start our drilling plans in the Huron in Kentucky. The Huron has returned to being a profitable play and an added benefit is increased throughput in the Huron gathering system, which will facilitate a future sale to EQT Midstream Partners," stated Dave Porges, Chief Executive Officer.
EQT Production 2014 CAPEX is projected to total $1.9 billion, excluding land acquisitions. The breakdown is $1.6 billion for well development; $50 million for developmental geological and geophysical activities, and the remainder for capitalized overhead, well maintenance and compliance. The 2014 drilling program is expected to support 2015 sales volume of 575 – 600 Bcfe.
The Company plans to spend approximately $1.1 billion on Marcellus well development in 2014 – drilling 186 Marcellus wells with an average lateral length of 4,800 feet. All of the wells will be on multi-well pads to maximize operational efficiency and well economics. Approximately 90% of the Marcellus drilling program will focus on the Company’s two core development areas of southwestern Pennsylvania and northern West Virginia; with the remainder in central Pennsylvania to further de-risk this future development area. EQT Production owns approximately 560,000 net Marcellus acres.
The Company plans to spend approximately $145 million on Utica well development in 2014 – drilling 21 wells in its liquids-rich acreage located in Guernsey County, Ohio. The 2014 Utica wells are expected to have an average lateral length of 6,500 feet. EQT Production owns approximately 14,000 net Utica acres in Ohio.
Upper Devonian Development
The Company plans to spend approximately $155 million to drill 30 Upper Devonian wells in 2014, with an average lateral length of 4,000 feet. The Upper Devonian shale formation sits above the Marcellus zone across a substantial portion of EQT’s existing acreage position; to minimize development costs, all Upper Devonian wells drilled in 2014 will share a pad with Marcellus wells. EQT Production owns approximately 170,000 net acres in the Upper Devonian that the Company believes can be developed as a separate zone.
EQT plans to spend approximately $180 million to drill 120 Huron wells in 2014, with an average lateral length of 6,000 feet. In addition to the play being profitable at current prices, a secondary benefit of the Huron drilling program is an increase in produced volumes through the extensive gathering system, facilitating a future sale to EQT Midstream Partners. The Company owns approximately 1.4 million net acres of Huron shale formation in Kentucky and currently has more than 800 producing horizontal wells in the play.
EQT Midstream plans to invest $475 million in 2014. The breakdown is estimated to be $345 million for Marcellus gathering infrastructure; and $90 million for upgrades to the Allegheny Valley Connector, a FERC-regulated transmission pipeline that EQT acquired as part of the sale of its utility business, and the remainder for maintenance and compliance activities.
The Marcellus gathering investments are focused on EQT Production's development areas in southwestern Pennsylvania and northern West Virginia, and are expected to increase gathering capacity by 120 MMcf per day in Pennsylvania and 320 MMcf per day in West Virginia.