Goodrich planning 32 wells in Tuscaloosa shale

Goodrich Petroleum said Wednesday it plans to spend $300 million to drill 32 wells in the Tuscaloosa Marine Shale in 2014, with roughly $34 million to $45 million of that coming in the first three months of the year.

Goodrich said it has two rigs drilling now, one in Tangipahoa Parish and another in Amite County, Miss. A third rig will begin working in early March.

Goodrich is also fracturing another Amite County well, driving hundreds of thousands of gallons of water and sand into the ground to crack the formation and release the oil.

The activity update was included in Goodrich’s year-end earnings report.

The company said the 32-well total depends on having five rigs working in the formation by the second half of the year. Goodrich said results for the Weyerhaeuser 51H-1 in St. Helena Parish have been delayed. That well has issues with debris plugging the horizontal section of the well. The well lies roughly 3 miles south of what has been the most productive well, which is also Goodrich’s, in the Tuscaloosa.

Goodrich, with headquarters in Houston, is the largest player in the oil-rich formation, which stretches across the middle of Louisiana into Mississippi. In 2014, Goodrich is dedicating most of its $375 million drilling budget to the Tuscaloosa.

For the year, Goodrich’s losses grew to $113.8 million, or $2.99 per share, compared to a loss of $90.2 million, or $2.48 per share, a year earlier. The 2013 results include a $7.1 million expense for paying off debt.