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EIA Marcellus Shale Play Map


The U.S. Energy Information Administration is updating maps of major tight oil and shale gas plays of the lower 48 states including the Marcellus shale of the Appalachian basin. The revised Marcellus play map summarizes geologic play elements, the growth of production, and distribution of sweet spots within the play based on publicly available data and a commercial well information database. The Middle Devonian Marcellus shale was deposited during the early stages of mountain building events in a foreland basin. The Marcellus Shale disconformably overlies the Onondaga Limestone and is composed of a basal black shale, a widespread limestone unit, and an upper black shale. Key geologic drivers defining the most prospective areas within the Marcellus shale footprint are comparable to other shale-gas plays and consist of an optimal combination of structural, geochemical, petrophysical, and thermodynamic characteristics. From 2004 through July 2014 more than 7000 wells targeting Marcellus shale were drilled in the Appalachian basin (Drilling Info, Inc). Reported natural gas production from the Marcellus play is more than 15 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d), accounting for almost 40% of U.S. shale gas production as of July 2014 (EIA, 2014). For the Marcellus play, the geologic elements presented include contoured elevation of the top and base of formation, isopach, major structures and tectonic features, play boundaries, well locations, and gas-to-oil ratios of producing wells. Additional map layers will be added as additional geologic data becomes available.