Pioneer Natural Resources Company (NYSE:PXD)
(“Pioneer” or “the Company”) today reported fourth-quarter 2013 production and the production impact attributable to the previously-announced severe winter weather in Texas.
Pioneer’s fourth-quarter production averaged 173 thousand barrels oil equivalent per day (MBOEPD). This volume excludes Alaska operations that will be reflected as discontinued operations in the fourth quarter. The Company estimates that fourth-quarter production was curtailed by approximately 6 MBOEPD. Approximately 5 MBOEPD of this curtailment was related to heavy icing and low temperatures across Pioneer’s leasehold position in the Spraberry/Wolfcamp area that resulted in extensive power outages, facility freeze-ups, trucking curtailments and limited access to production and drilling facilities. Specific to the power outages, in Pioneer’s Midkiff area which experienced the greatest impact from the severe winter weather, over 1,000 utility poles, 900 transformers and 1,000 miles of power lines were damaged and had to be replaced by the utility providers serving this area between late November and early January.
When the severe weather first occurred in late November, over 50% of Pioneer’s more than 7,000 wells in the Spraberry/Wolfcamp area were shut in. All of the wells that were affected have been returned to production and the Company does not anticipate any adverse effects on future well performance due to the downtime. Drilling and completion operations have returned to normal. This includes Pioneer’s horizontal drilling program that currently has 8 rigs operating in the southern Wolfcamp joint venture area and 9 rigs operating across the Company’s northern acreage. Pioneer expects to have more than 10 rigs operating on its northern acreage by the end of the first quarter.
The remaining curtailed production in the fourth quarter was due to facility freeze-ups in Pioneer’s Eagle Ford Shale, Barnett Shale Combo and West Panhandle areas. Operations in these areas have also returned to normal.