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AAPG Bulletin

Abstract


Volume: 60 (1976)

Issue: 8. (August)

First Page: 1277

Last Page: 1287

Title: Developments in Southeastern States in 1975

Author(s): P. D. Cate (2)

Abstract:

Onshore 1975 drilling activity in Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, and Georgia increased 4.4% from 1974. A total of 591 tests was drilled compared to 566 in 1974. The increase was because of development activity, however, as 237 tests were drilled versus 196 in 1974. Exploratory drilling declined with 354 tests reported, 16 less than in 1974. Although total exploratory drilling decreased, new-field discoveries increased from 20 in 1974 to 27 in 1975. The new-field success rate was 8.7% compared to 6.1% in 1974.

The Wilcox trend of southwestern Mississippi was the leading drilling trend. Jurassic drilling continued to decline, but this was partly because of more emphasis on deeper and more expensive tests. The Paleozoic trend in the Black Warrior basin was the third most active drilling area but no important new fields were discovered. Lower Cretaceous activity increased considerably and more exploratory interest in this trend is expected for 1976. Exploration for Upper Cretaceous objectives declined sharply and only 1 discovery was recorded.

Seismic activity increased in the southeastern states in 1975. Much of the activity was detailed or limited reconnaissance work supplementing data acquired in previous years. Some of the increase was because of the deep Smackover successes in southwestern Alabama. Important leasing activity occurred in the Lower Cretaceous trend and along the coastal counties of Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida panhandle where the deep Jurassic was the primary objective. Overall, however, no extensive blocks were assembled and leasing appeared to be mainly a continuation of efforts started in previous years.

Offshore Mafla activity is not presented in this report but several deep tests were drilled that are pertinent to the nearby onshore potential. No discoveries were completed and the potential of the vast offshore area declined to almost nothing. Jurassic wildcats were drilled, including one on the huge Destin anticline, with no encouraging results.

Total drilling activity is predicted to remain about the same in 1976 as in 1975. Governmental policies and regulations again will be most important, particularly in exploratory drilling. Most drilling activity will be conducted by independents and aggressive smaller companies with support from the larger companies.

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