Chances are, most American have heard the term “fracking” by now. Whether they live in an area where fracking is currently being done, or have no idea what it actually is, what all people should be made aware of is this: according to many experts, fracking “has created a revolution in U.S. oil and natural gas production.”*
One of these experts is H. Sterling Burnett, a senior fellow with the National Center for Policy Analysis. In addition to the quoted statement above, Burnett points out these facts:
- Growth of natural gas reserves is unprecedented
- The U.S. is producing oil at rates not seen since the 1970s
- Natural gas—the “fuel of choice for generating base load electricity” —could not play this role without fracking
- Just 10% of the 516 trillion cubic feet (TCF) of natural gas located between NY and West Virginia
- Could satisfy two years of total U.S. consumption
- The Marcellus shale reserve, called “the Saudi Arabia of natural gas” by geologists, could contain over 410 TCF of gas
Burnett also points out that the Marcellus reserve is just one shale formation; there’s the California’s Monterey Shale, Eagle Ford, Barnett, and more. Assuming the lowest projected recovery rates for Marcellus still leads to the estimation that that reserve could meet the country’s demands for at least 14 years.
What’s more? Fracking has already proved to be revolutionary; in just the past few years, crude oil production has increased by two million barrels each day. Our increasing oil and gas independence, coupled with lower prices, has proved to be an across the board economic and industry booster, even playing a major part in bringing manufacturing back in a very big way.
In short, fracking is a huge part of the country’s past, present, and future economic success, and its potential is infinite, as long as it continues as its proponents hope it will.