DrillOrDrop’s review of the latest UK onshore oil data for January 2022: production down despite high prices
Daily production: 14,010 barrels per day (bopd)
Weight: 56,905 tonnes
Volume: 69,049 m3
Volume of onshore as a proportion of UK total oil production: 1.68%
Headlines of the month
- Second lowest daily production in five years
- Smallest contribution to total UK oil extraction for 10 months
- Falls in volume, weight and daily production
The data in this post was compiled and published by the North Sea Transition Authority (NSTA) from reports by oil companies. It is published about three months in arrears. All the charts are based on the NSTA data.
- Despite the high oil price, January 2022 saw the lowest onshore daily production, at 14,010 barrels of oil per day (bopd) since April 2021
- The fall reversed a recent increase in daily production in both November and December 2021
- January 2022 was the second lowest figure in the previous year
- Compared with January 2021, daily onshore production was down 5.3% and down 10.11% on January 2020
Volume and weight down
- Falls in January 2022 reversed the rise in December 2021
- Volume (69,049 m3) and weight (56,905 tonnes) were both down 2.3% on the previous month
- In the past 12 months, weight has not exceeded 60,000 tonnes and volume has below 70,000m3 for nine months
Contribution to UK oil production
- Onshore production in January 2022 made the lowest contribution to total UK oil extraction since March 2021
- It was the third lowest figure in the past 12 months, reversing increases in the previous two months
Top 20 fields
- All but six fields in the top 20 in January 2022 saw falls in production (tonnes)
- The only increases were at Newton-on-Trent (see below), Humbly Grove, Whisby, Cold Hanworth, Corringham and Goodworth
- Newton-on-Trent joined the top 20 for the first time since we’ve been reporting these figures, with a reported restart of production
- Stockbridge lost its fourth place in the rankings, replaced by Humbly Grove
- Whisby rose one to sixth place, pushing Horndean into seventh
- Scampton North fell from 10th to 15th place
- According to the data, January 2022 saw the first oil produced at this field in more than 10 years (since June 2000).
- NSTA records indicate that the 480.2 tonnes said to be produced in January 2022 was the highest ever monthly weight from this field
- It represented 13% of total production from the field
Update: The data release for February 2022 did not include these figures and suggest they were a mistake
Wytch Farm, Dorset
- The UK’s biggest onshore oil field saw a 3% fall in January 2022, compared with December 2021
- January 2022 was the sixth lowest month for production at Wytch Farm in the past two years
- This is the 16th month where Wytch Farm monthly production has been below 50,000 tonnes
Humbly Grove, Hampshire: Production was up again in January 2022, recovering from the steep fall in November 2021
Whisby, Lincolnshire: Monthly production stayed above 400 tonnes in January 2022, following a jump in spring 2021
Horse Hill, Surrey: Despite a small drop in January 2022, Horse Hill monthly production held at around 250 tonnes for the fourth consecutive month. But the latest data puts January 2022 down 41% on the same month in 2021 and 75% down on the highest monthly production (981 tonnes in April 2020)
Stockbridge, Hampshire: January 2022production at 694 tonnes was down 16% on December 2021 and 34% down on November 2021. But the latest month remains in the top 10 in the past two years.
Horndean, Horndean: Production has been fairly stable in the past six months at Horndean. But January 2022 was the third lowest in the past two years, down 9% on December 2021 and 11% on November 2021.
Scampton North, Lincolnshire: Monthly production in January 2022 at 203 tonnes was at the lowest level of the past two years at Scampton North. A fall, which began in October 2021, continued with January 31% down on December 2021 and 44% down on November 2021.
Beckingham, Surrey: January 2022 continued a downward trend in monthly production, falling to 275 tonnes. This is the fifth lowest monthly figure in the past two years. The latest figure is 6% down on December 2021 and 10% down on November 2021.
There was no production at 11 onshore oil fields in January 2022:
- Angus Energy sites in Brockham in Surrey and Lidsey in West Sussex
- Egdon Resources fields at Kirklington, Dukes Wood and Waddock Cross
- IGas fields at Avington, Egmanton, Nettleham, Palmer’s Wood, Scampton and South Leverton
The UK’s biggest onshore operator, Perenco, saw its total production, at 47,719 tonnes, fall 3% in January 2022, compared with the month before. The company’s contribution to UK onshore oil production fell from 84.47 in December 2021 to 83.86% in January 2022.
The second biggest producer, IGas, also saw production fall, to 6,539 tonnes in January 2022, down 10% on the previous month. Its contribution to total UK onshore production also dropped, from 12.45% to 11.49%.
The apparent big winner this month was Britnrg Limited, which operates Newton-upon-Trent. The company’s total production more than doubled to more than 960 tonnes. The figures have since been changed and the latest data shows Newton-on-Trent is still not producing.
EP UK Investments, which operates Humbly Grove, also saw total production rise – up 43% to more than 1,157 tonnes.
Total monthly production fell for UK Oil & Gas plc, Europa Oil and Gas, Onshore Oilfield Services Limited. Egdon Resources rose slightly but its figures still do not include the Wressle oil site in North Lincolnshire, which is still formally under test.