May 4, 2013
Field of Dreams: The Meteoric Rise of Texas Oil Production
The oil industry in Texas has a rich history of success but the good news keeps on coming in this oil rich state and the meteoric rise in oil output this year confirms that this most remarkable energy success story in US history, still has some way to go before the story is finished.
The Energy Information Administration recently released figures for the month of February 2013 and it showed that Texas produced an average of 2.295 million barrels per day of crude oil. This is the highest average daily output in the state since April 1986, some 27 years ago. This exceptional output is good news for the energy industry overall and Texas electricity providers amongst others are viewing the future with a degree of optimism that they can meet the energy challenges ahead.
Doubles all round
Oil production in the Lone Star State has more than doubled in a space of less than three years, with an increase from 1.142 million to 2.295 million barrels per day. To put this meteoric rise in production into context, it is considered to be one of the most significant increases in output ever recorded in the US, when you consider the timespan involved.
The reason for the stellar rise in production is largely credited to the advent of revolutionary drilling techniques that have recently enabled oil companies to gain access to vast oceans of Texas shale oil. A production increase of one million barrels of oil output in a period of less than three years is a phenomenal success story however you look at it and it would not have been possible without the technological revolution that has taken place in drilling techniques.
Back from the brink
The extraordinary increase in the levels of oil output in Texas during the last three years has had the effect of almost completely reversing the 23 year trend of declining productivity rates in a fraction of that time period. During 2009, Texas was responsible for producing less than 20% of the total of America’s domestic crude oil but that figure has now risen to beyond 30% and is still showing signs of increasing further.
An interesting comparison to consider is that if Texas was considered as a separate oil-producing country in its own right, it would be ranked as the 13th largest oil-producing nation in the world today. If the current rate of increase in production continues and reaches a new level of 3 million barrels of oil per day, that would be enough to push it up in the theoretical world rankings from currently 13th to 8th, which gives you some perspective on what an incredible success story the increase in oil production in recent years really is.
A welcome impact on the local economy as a result of the increased production is the improvement in the local employment levels, with 329,500 jobs added in the last 12 months alone. That means that every day almost 1,500 new jobs are being created in Texas and most of them are connected in some way or another to the oil and gas industry.
There is no doubt that Texas is a mighty fine place to be right now, especially if you are involved in oil production.
Linda Harris is a former school teacher. Now living on a retirement income, she writes about how to save on energy costs on various blog sites.