The new crude oil production from shale formations like the Bakken in North Dakota are making a huge difference in the U.S. energy profile. In October 2013, for the first time since 1995, more crude oil was produced in the United States than the nation imported. This may not be energy independence; however, it is a big step in that direction.
Horizontal drilling technologies and hydraulic fracturing have provided the surge in domestically produced oil. Because of these two advances in oil-field technology, drillers are effectively tapping shale formations that hold crude oil and natural gas.
Experts believe that the U.S. will surpass Russia and Saudi Arabia as the world’s top oil producer by 2015 and North Dakota’s oil production will be a big part of this changed status.
Because of horizontal drilling and fracking, North Dakota has been setting oil production records. Only Texas produces more oil than North Dakota. Because of the oil production in North Dakota the drive for U.S. oil independence, which was always thought to be wishful thinking, seems, now probable. Shale formations have been the game changer.
It is worth reminding everyone that North Dakota energy industry isn’t restricted to oil and gas development, lignite coal has had and will continue to have, a big part in forming the state energy profile. Also North Dakota’s Public Service Commission recently approved a $350 million 200.5 megawatt wind farm in the southeastern part of the state.