Operators across the country licensed 884 wells in October, with British Columbia reporting a monthly high for 2017 and Saskatchewan recording a year-over-year decline for the period.

Over the first 10 months of the year, a total of 7,757 wells across Canada have been permitted compared to 4,437 in the year-prior period (up about 75 per cent).

British Colombia approved (input) 130 new licences in October — a monthly high for 2017 — and up from 38 approved a year ago. To the end of October, B.C. has approved 718 new wells compared to 237 in the January-to-October period last year (an increase of 202 per cent).

In Saskatchewan, 253 well permits were issued in October, down about five per cent from 267 in the year-prior period. The province has licensed 2,899 wells in the first 10 months of the year versus 1,685 a year ago (up about 72 per cent).

Alberta approved 478 new licences last month compared to 436 a year ago — an increase of almost 10 per cent. To the end of October the province has permitted 3,938 wells, up about 62 per cent from 2,431 wells a year ago.

Manitoba granted 23 well authorizations last month compared to six in October 2016. Over the first 10 months of the year, the province has licensed 190 new wells compared to 76 a year ago (up 150 per cent).

Operators across Western Canada licensed 515 oil and bitumen wells last month, up from 428 in October 2016. Over the first 10 months of the year, 5,046 oil and bitumen wells have been authorized compared to 2,642 a year ago.

In October, 187 gas wells were permitted in Alberta, B.C. and Saskatchewan compared to 149 last year. In the first 10 months of 2017, operators in these three provinces have licensed 1,389 gas wells compared to 1,102 gas permits in the comparable period last year.

There were 10 oilsands evaluation holes permitted in October. Operators have licensed only 95 oilsands evaluation holes in the January-to-October period compared to 325 a year ago.

Over the first 10 months of the year, operators have licensed 6,307 horizontal wells, or about 86 per cent of the total wells authorized across Canada (excluding experimental wells).

Last year, to the end of October, about 85 per cent of the permitted wells were horizontals.

Including experimental wells, Crescent Point Energy Corp. led producers by permitting 85 wells in October.

Raging River Exploration Inc. licensed 38 wells, followed closely by Seven Generations Energy Ltd. with 37, Canadian Natural Resources Limited with 36 new wells licensed and Devon Canada Corporation with 35.

At the 10-month mark, including experimental wells, Crescent Point has licensed 710 wells, followed by Canadian Natural (549) and Teine Energy Ltd. (364).

Cenovus Energy Inc. and Tourmaline Oil Corp. have each licensed 326 wells to the end of October.