Introduction to the Bakken field, drilling in general, and the economic impact

North Dakota Oil is an introduction to the amazing oil boom in the Bakken field.  The Bakken spreads across North Dakota, Montana, and Saskatchewan and is the source of the economic boom in western North Dakota.

The report is a 21 page overview of the Bakken field, oil drilling in general, fracking in particular, and  the astounding opportunities for jobs and oil production.  It was produced by Oppidan.

By the way, the title is far too modest for the content.  Ought to have a snappier title.

If you are looking for an overview of what is going on in Bakken, or the astounding growth in energy production in the U.S. in general, check it out.

A few fun comments from the booklet:

Today, the Williston Basin is North America’s largest known reserve of light sweet crude.

Recoverable Oil –  Many experts estimate recoverable oil as high as 20-50 billion barrels, with 24 billion barrels being used in many new assumptions.

The astounding boom underway today could last for 10 or 15 years.

Today there are 6,000 wells with room for 30,000-45,000 wells

To date on average, approximately 2,400 new wells can be drilled a year, meaning this continuous drilling will likely last at least 15 more years.

That means there are four or six times more wells to drill than have been drilled already.

One really cool thing I learned? The high employment won’t go away when the drilling stops.

Graph of projected jobs in the oil patch on page 19 show the employment will about double over the next 10 years. The more amazing thing is that the production jobs, which are needed just to maintain the output from existing wells, will grow slowly but will sustain at the level equal to the current drilling employment.

If I read that graph correctly, and understand what my son has told me, the employment levels in the western North Dakota area today are sustainable for the next 40 years.

There are lots of challenges in the region from the oil boom. The report mentions just a few: need for more roads, housing, medical facilities. Even retail space.

The impact on the state budget is a $1 billion, yes billion, surplus.

The booming oil industry in North Dakota has increased the state surplus to over $1 billion.

With a population of 683,000, that means the state government is running a surplus of $1,464 per resident. Cool.

That is roughly one-fourth of their annual spending of $3.8B.

To put that in perspective, if the California state government was doing that well, for our population of 37.7M, we would have a $55.1B surplus instead of a $16B deficit. A surplus equal to one-fourth of our planned 94.2B spending would be $23B.

If you are at all interested in the oil boom that is just getting started, check out North Dakota Oil.

Hat tip: BakkenBlog.

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