Idaho Oil and Gas

The purpose of the Oil and Gas Program at the Idaho Geologic Survey is to advance the understanding of petroleum resources in the State of Idaho in a manner that enables exploration and development in an economically efficient and socially responsible fashion. We achieve this through:

  • Conducting primary research on the formation and occurrence of proven and possible petroleum systems.
  • Preparing assessments on the hydrocarbon potential of select geologic provinces.
  • Storing, archiving, and disseminating a wide variety of subsurface geological data.
  • Transferring knowledge and information to operators, scientists, policy makers, and the public.

A current summary of the IGS Oil and Gas Program can be found in the GeoNote 46.

GeoNote 46

IGS is a non-regulatory agency and its scope is solely for the collection and dissemination of data. The regulatory aspects of oil and gas exploration, drilling, and production fall under the purview of the Oil and Gas Conservation Commission.

Southwestern Idaho Oil and Gas Play

New production of oil, natural gas and liquid condensate in the Payette Basin (Payette and Gem Counties) caused Idaho to become the 31st state in the US to produce hydrocarbons. Pliocene-Miocene lacustrine sediments of the Idaho Group are the main targets. Wells drilled after 2008 are not searchable via the IGS interactive maps. Information of the status of these recent wells including permits and production data can be found but can be found on the Idaho Oil and Gas commission website.

Southeastern Idaho Oil and Gas Play

Exploration activity is also occurring in Bonneville County. These wells are mainly targeting the Jurassic Stump-Preuss formations. A map of the most recent exploration activity is currently in progress. Check back for a link to the newest map.

Historical Data

Information on oil and gas exploration wells drilled in Idaho from 1903-1988 was transferred to the Idaho Geological Survey in 2009. Idaho Geological Survey has scanned the data to make all files available to the public in a digital format.

The Idaho Geological Survey maintains files on over one hundred fifty oil and gas wells in the state. These files include the reports and logs provided by companies to the Oil and Gas Commission from 1903-1988. Some files contain drilling service reports, geophysical logs, geologic logs, and lease maps. Most are one-of-a-kind documents, and many are in fragile condition. Available files are organized by IGS no., and can be found by searching our Interactive Map Application. Please refer to IGS no. when inquiring about files.

The Idaho Geological Survey holds no cuttings or core. Some wells in Idaho have cuttings or core that are stored at the Core Research Center (CRC) that was established in 1974 by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the Bureau of Economic Geology (BEG) to preserve valuable rock cores and cuttings.

The Survey provides digital copies of all oil and gas document scans as free downloads. All historic documents can also be downloaded in a zipped file(WARNING: large file, 3 GB!).