EIA: US Leading Producer of Oil and Natural Gas, Thanks to Shale
According to a new report from the Energy Information Administration (EIA), the United States continued to lead the world in production of oil and natural gas in 2014. Notably, the report points out that U.S. energy production continued to surpass that of Russia and Saudi Arabia:
“Since 2008, U.S. petroleum production has increased by more than 11 quadrillion British thermal units (Btu), with dramatic growth in Texas and North Dakota. Despite the 50% decline in crude oil prices that occurred in the second half of last year, U.S. petroleum production still increased by 3 quadrillion Btu (1.6 million barrels per day) in 2014. Natural gas production—largely from the eastern United States—increased by 5 quadrillion Btu (13.9 billion cubic feet per day) over the past five years. Combined hydrocarbon output in Russia increased by 3 quadrillion Btu and in Saudi Arabia by 4 quadrillion Btu over the past five years.”
The EIA report notes that this production growth is “directly attributable” to developing oil and natural gas from shale formations across the country. This key fact underscores the importance of hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling to the U.S. economy and energy security while also providing a clean and affordable source of energy for the nation.
Looking at the analysis from EIA in the context of other recently released data also shows a growing trend in U.S. production. According to the American Petroleum Institute’s (API) 2015 State of American Energy report:
“Since 2008, America’s crude oil production has surged by 70 percent, rising from an average of 5 million barrels per day in 2008 to 8.6 million barrels per day in August 2014. At its current production rate, the United States is anticipated to surpass both Saudi Arabia and Russia, historically two top energy producers, to become the world’s largest producer of oil this year” (p.5).
Even with the recent decline in prices, the EIA predicts that U.S. crude oil production will continue to rise in 2015. With oil production at the highest level in nearly three decades and natural gas production levels that continue to rise, the U.S. is well poised to continue to meet our energy needs in 2015 and beyond.