Lynn Helms, director of North Dakota’s Department of Mineral Resources, reports that the number of oil-focused rigs in the state has dropped to its lowest point since July 2011. Helms mentions a handful of reasons, but let’s focus on one: uncertainty over where the federal government might go in regulating hydraulic fracturing. Interesting.
Several reports out this week highlight the job-creating potential of shale development and the impact it is having on the overall economy.
Leading the way is the Bakken formation, creating opportunities in North Dakota and surrounding states.
From E&E (subscription required):
Perhaps only The New York Times could reduce the energy/economic miracle of North Dakota’s oil and natural gas bonanza to something akin to a toothache. Columnist Gail Collins ventures forth from the concrete canyons of Manhattan to discover the hubbub on the high plains and doesn’t avoid raising a skeptical eyebrow.
A year ago this week the FracFocus.org online chemical disclosure registry was created, and what a year it has been: 130 companies logging in the chemicals used in the hydraulic fracturing of more than 15,000 wells. More than that, the site is information rich on fracking, groundwater protection, state regulatory efforts and more.
Pretty neat animation by the Energy Information Administration, showing the growth of oil and natural gas production in the Bakken shale play between 1985 and 2010. You can see the locations and the yields of different wells within the Bakken in time-lapse fashion. EIA:
New quantification of the national impact of the shale natural gas revolution going on in the United States, from IHS Global Insight, one of the world’s largest economic analysis and forecasting firms:
In Steubenville, Ohio, they’re talking about job growth so dynamic that every adult in town could be working by April. In Bismarck, N.D., unemployment is a microscopic 3 percent. In both, oil and natural gas development is a key driving force.