Currently, the US is going through a shale gas boom over the past decade since new drilling technology came out along with growing demand among oil and gas companies. While, the shale boom has transformed the US, many other countries have attempted to cultivate a similar energy boom in their countries but the fact of the matter is that the US has some of the best and largest reserves. Not to mention, most of the new shale opportunities outside of the US are still in the beginning stages.
One of the more impressive shales and one of the better known shale reserves is the Bakken shale, located in North Dakota and Montana. The oil reserve was only spewing out 60,000 barrels every day about five years ago. Today, the shale property is giving 500,000 barrels per day and it has been estimated that if all the room was taken on the Bakken Shale, we could see up to 1 million barrels per day.
Recently, an oil shale was discovered in Siberia, Russia that is about 80 times bigger than the Bakken Shale. Bazhenov, as it is called, is 570 million acres which comes out to be about the size of Texas and the Gulf of Mexico, combined.
Since Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM) signed an agreement with Russia that basically gave each side access to the other’s oil reserves. So this means that Exxon will be able to get a nice piece of land on the Bazhenov to drill and develop.
While there is definitely more oil out there than we previously knew about, shale does bring some environmental concerns to the table. Fracking is highly controversial right now and unethical to some. Regardless, there is a lot of oil reserves in places that we did not even know there was oil, look at the US and all its shale properties.
Oil reserves are in vast supply which now gives the need for an alternative fuel the back seat. However, even though we do now have more oil reserves, it is still important that we continue forward with our alternative fuel goals. This goes along with my argument for the US to export LNG also. Japan has already approached the US, asking for us to export LNG to them, as they continue to step away from nuclear energy. The bottom line here is that there is a lot more oil than we previously thought, especially in the US. However, we need to continue on with our goals of creating an alternative energy.