Filed under: Capitalism, Economy, Energy, Environment | Tags: Eagle Ford Shale, The Bakken Oil Field, The Permian Basin
The revolutionary drilling techniques that are changing the energy situation in America and in the world—hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling—are unlocking oceans of shale oil in Texas and North Dakota. The stunning increase in the combined output of the Bakken, Eagle Ford Shale and Permian Basin oil fields between 2007 and 2014 is a remarkable success story. It is bringing amazing energy-based prosperity to America in the form of millions of “shovel-ready” jobs throughout the economy; a huge boost in state tax revenues; millions of dollars of royalty payments to landowners and farmers; lower energy prices, and more energy independence.
America’s contemporary society depends on cheap plentiful and dependable energy. Energy is a big percentage of the costs of everything that needs manufacturing, transporting and distributing. This has been one of the most remarkable success stories in American history. And it wasn’t all that long ago when every politician was concerned about our “dependence on foreign oil.”
Environmental activists have pushed for bans, moratoriums, or other restrictions alleging that “fracking” is somehow a threat to public health or to the environment, and searched for some species that can be called endangered. but increasing numbers of environmentalists have distanced themselves from the fracking ban movement. Greenhouse gas emissions have fallen 10 percent since 2005, attributed largely to the increased use of natural gas.
Hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling have unlocked a 200-year supply of natural gas, making the fuel more affordable for economic growth and household use. The activists don’t want to hear any good news, it disturbs their vision of a declining world and open-ended government planning.
This dandy chart from Economist Mark Perry illustrates the marvelous growth in production from less than 200,000 barrels per day to nearly 1,600,000 barrels per day at present and climbing. That should power a lot of economic growth! Perhaps we should ask just why the administration is not interested in that!
Combined, the three fields have gone from 1 million barrels per day in 2007 to 4 million in 2014, all on private land, so Obama cannot halt production.