Technology advancements and innovative drilling methods have allowed oil and natural gas companies to reach more reserves while reducing environmental impact in many ways. Over the last several years, operators began drilling multiple wells from a single wellsite, known as “Pad Drilling”, which lessens the surface “footprint” of drilling operations. In areas with complex formations that have layering deposits of fossil fuels, like the Permian Basin, multilateral drilling is utilized to reduce the number of wells drilled on the surface. Improvements in old technologies like slim hole drilling, which has been used since the 1940’s by multiple industries, is helping operators save money by reducing drilling time and the amount of drill solids generated. Also, extended reach drilling gives operators the capability of tapping oil and natural gas reserves that cannot be reached by vertical drilling, evading the disturbance of developed or environmentally sensitive areas.
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