Empire Petroleum Corp. announced the commencement of its 2023 drilling program with the company’s new well spud at its North Dakota Starbuck Field, according to an Oct. 11 news release.

The Starbuck drilling program plans to include 10-14 drilling wells, average lateral length per well of approximately 2,300 ft in Phase 1 and 5,900 ft in Phase 2, according to the company. Additional specifics include average capital spend per well of $1.6 million- $1.8 million, bringing total spending to roughly $20 million- $22 million.

The company stated that its capital development programs in 2023 and 2024 are designed to maintain cost-effective production growth with a strong return rate.

 “Starbuck surface facilities are nearing completion and ready to bring additional production online in 2023 Q4,” Mike Morrisett, president and CEO of Empire said in the release. “Our drilling and development programs are well-designed and focused on our highest potential rate-of-return assets as we focus on growing our core oil assets through enhanced oil & gas recovery methods to materially improve performance.”

Empire is expected to start the first phase of its drilling program on its New Mexico asset in 2024.