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Exxon CEO says 5-year program could double its shale output

Exxon Mobil Chief Executive Darren Woods told an energy industry conference on Thursday he aims to double the amount of oil produced from its U.S. shale holdings over a five-year period using new technologies.

“We are beginning to see the signs of some very promising new technologies” that will “significantly improve recovery” volumes, Woods said at the Bernstein Strategic Decisions conference.

Exxon currently recovers about 10% of shale resources from its operations. A first wave of new shale technology could come by fracking along much longer lateral well segments, and keep the fracks open so more resources flow, he said.

“My challenge to the organization was to double recoveries and to find technologies that could unlock that,” he said. “There is still a lot of oil being left on the ground.”

Exxon last year postponed by two years a target to reach 1 million barrels per day (bpd) of production in the Permian Basin, the top U.S. shale field, due to setbacks during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In December, it set a new goal to reach between 900,000 bpd and 1 million bpd in the Permian by 2027, with 9% to 11% production growth there this year.
Source: Reuters (Reporting by Sabrina Valle; editing by Gary McWilliams and Bill Berkrot)

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