It projects the number of wells drilled next year in the four western provinces at 10,100 – as compared to 10,830 this year.
It cites commodity pricing and market access as the two biggest drivers behind the reduction, but it believes 2015 will bring some resolve and positive movement on both those fronts.
PSAC says it’s basing this new forecast on average pricing of $85 US a barrel for crude oil, and $3.80 Canadian per million cubic feet for natural gas.
On a provincial basis, it’s predicting an across the board decline, and B.C. is expected to post the largest slump of 20 per cent, with the number of wells down from 690 to 555.
It’s also anticipating an Alberta slump of 6 per cent to 5,740 wells, as well as a 5.4 per cent drop in Saskatchewan – 3,365 wells, and a Manitoba drop – 430 wells.
However, the Association says it’s meterage and not the number of wells drilled that’s becoming the key indicator of activity, and while the industry is drilling close to 60 per cent fewer wells than a decade ago, the total number of meters drilled is down only 20 percent.
PSAC also forecasts that next year the average number of meters drilled per well will nearly double to just over 2,400 as compared to just 1,232 in 2005.