Trend Watch: U.S. Oil Production Booms

Oil production in the United States has surged in recent months with a record output of more than 10 million barrels per day. This year, the United States is projected to surpass Saudi Arabia as an oil producer and may also rival world-leader Russia.

This oil production resurgence comes in the wake of a shakeout among U.S. oil and gas companies. After adjusting exploration and extraction techniques, U.S. energy companies are on a more sound financial ground and are even becoming a greater player in the oil export market.

As the United States regains its footing on the international energy market, experts claim that this resurgence will provide increased energy security at home and abroad. America is also emerging as a major exporter of natural gas.

This uptick in U.S. gas and oil production has been in response to international demand and reflects major energy companies’ investment in West Texas and New Mexico shale fields. Such levels of production help cushion U.S. consumers from market fluctuations, such as pipeline failures or storms, that cause spikes in prices at the pump.

The upswing in American gas and oil production has had effects on the international energy stage. Because of the boom, imports from OPEC have decreased 20 percent from late 2016 to late 2017. Because America has become a major exporter of natural gas, the Russian energy dominance in Eastern Europe has been eroded, too.

In 2017, domestic oil production averaged 9.3 million barrels a day. The Energy Department estimates that domestic oil production will increase to 10.3 million barrels in 2018. U.S. exports of oil have risen to about 2 million barrels per day. In addition, the Energy Department projects domestic production to increase another 500,000 barrels per day in 2019.

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