Updated: March 2, 2021
With 11 million barrels per day, the United States is now the largest producer of crude oil in the world, ahead of Saudi Arabia and Russia, for the first time since 1973, according to preliminary estimates published on Wednesday by the U.S. Energy Department.
“The feat demonstrates how the US shale oil boom has reshaped the global energy landscape. American oil output has more than doubled over the past decade,” CNN said.
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“It’s an historic milestone and a reminder: Never bet against the US oil industry,” said Bob McNally, president of Rapidan Energy Group, a consulting firm.
CNN said Texas is the epicenter of the shale boom.
“Production in the Permian Basin of West Texas has grown so much that in February the United States vaulted above Saudi Arabia for the first time in more than two decades, according to the US Energy Information Administration.
“US output kept climbing in June and August, reaching nearly 11 million barrels per day. That nudged the United States ahead of Russia for the first time since February 1999, the EIA estimates.
“The United States isn’t expected to cede its crown any time soon. The EIA expects US oil production to stay ahead of Russia and Saudi Arabia through 2019,” CNN added.
The achievement is tied to the profound impact of rapid technological advances in drilling.
For instance, fracking unlocked vast sums of oil and natural gas that had been trapped underground while drilling costs declined dramatically.
Another important change: America now has oil customers around the world, CNN said, adding that “in late 2015, Congress lifted the 40-year ban on exporting crude oil. The United States now ships oil to South America, Europe and China”.
“The shale boom has important security implications. Today, the United States is less reliant on foreign oil, including from the turbulent Middle East,” the news outlet added.