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By Amy Dalrymple, Forum Communications
TIOGA, N.D. – Oil well pads are getting bigger in western North Dakota as companies figure out how to get the most oil out of the Bakken.
Hess Corp. has the Bakken’s largest well pad with 18 wells on a single location, but the state’s top oil regulator says he expects to see mega-pads get even larger.
“At any time in the not too distant future, their record is going to be eclipsed,” said Lynn Helms, director of the Department of Mineral Resources.
Regulators already have permitted a few larger multi-well pads, including one from Continental Resources that will have 25 wells on one location.
Many landowners prefer consolidating more wells onto one location rather than having several smaller pads, said Troy Coons, chairman of the Northwest Landowners Association.
“For the most part, people want things to be the most efficient so they can farm around them with the least amount of impact on the land,” Coons said.