Massive Untapped Oil Fields in North and South Dakota

The USGS is set to release a new report next month that might be able to put a lid on all of this out of control bidding by oil speculators. I’m really hoping that the American public has finally had it with paying those ridiculous prices at the pump and common sense will begin to prevail and coalesce into a unified front against all those damn tree huggers who will inevitably hop into their puke-green eco-vehicles en masse towards the Dakotas to sit in trees, whine, piss, moan, and do all those other ejaculatory things they love to do in an effort to destroy capitalism… (Don’t think that I have forgotten about Alaska, you whiny little SOB’s!)

Since the oil reserves are in located the Dakotas, I couldn’t help but chuckle quietly to myself as I was put in remembrance of the story told by Chief White Halfoat in the novel “Catch-22:”

Chief White Halfoat was out to revenge himself upon the white man. He could barely read or write and had been assigned to Captain Black as assistant intelligence officer.

“How could I learn to read or write?” Chief White Halfoat demanded with simulated belligerence, raising his voice again so that Doc Daneeka would hear. “Every place we pitched our tent, they sank an oil well. Every time they sank a well, they hit oil. And every time they hit oil, they made us pack up our tent and go someplace else. We were human divining rods. Our whole family had a natural affinity for petroleum deposits, and soon every oil company in the world had technicians chasing us around. We were always on the move. It was one hell of a way to bring a child up, I can tell you. I don’t think I ever spent more than a week in one place.”

His earliest memory was of a geologist.

“Every time another White Halfoat was born,” he continued, “the stock market turned bullish. Soon whole drilling crews were following us around with all their equipment just to get the jump on each other. Companies began to merge just so they could cut down on the number of people they had to assign to us. But the crowd in back of us kept growing. We never got a good night’s sleep. When we stopped, they stopped. When we moved, they moved, chuckwagons, bulldozers, derricks, generators. We were a walking business boom, and we began to receive invitations from some of the best hotels just for the amount of business we would drag into town with us. Some of those invitations were mighty generous, but we couldn’t accept any because we were Indians and all the best hotels that were inviting us wouldn’t accept Indians as guests. Racial prejudice is a terrible thing, Yossarian. It really is. It’s a terrible thing to treat a decent, loyal Indian like a nigger, kike, wop, or spic.” Chief White Halfoat nodded slowly with conviction.

“Then, Yossarian, it finally happened – the beginning of the end. They began to follow us around from in front. They would try to guess where we were going to stop next and would begin drilling before we even got there, so we couldn’t even stop. As soon as we’d begin to unroll our blankets, they would kick us off. They had confidence in us. They wouldn’t even wait to strike oil before they kicked us off. We were so tired we almost didn’t care the day our time ran out. One morning we found ourselves completely surrounded by oilmen waiting for us to come their way so they could kick us off. Everywhere you looked there was an oilman on a ridge, waiting there like Indians getting ready to attack. It was the end. We couldn’t stay where we were because we had just been kicked off. And there was no place left for us to go. Only the Army saved me. Luckily, the war broke out just in the nick of time, and a draft board picked me right up out of the middle and put me down safely in Lowery Field, Colorado. I was the only survivor.”

H/T – Warner

Massive Oil Deposit Could Increase US reserves by 10x

America is sitting on top of a super massive 200 billion barrel Oil Field that could potentially make America Energy Independent and until now has largely gone unnoticed. Thanks to new technology the Bakken Formation in North Dakota could boost America’s Oil reserves by an incredible 10 times, giving western economies the trump card against OPEC’s short squeeze on oil supply and making Iranian and Venezuelan threats of disrupted supply irrelevant.

In the next 30 days the USGS (U.S. Geological Survey) will release a new report giving an accurate resource assessment of the Bakken Oil Formation that covers North Dakota and portions of South Dakota and Montana. With new horizontal drilling technology it is believed that from 175 to 500 billion barrels of recoverable oil are held in this 200,000 square mile reserve that was initially discovered in 1951. The USGS did an initial study back in 1999 that estimated 400 billion recoverable barrels were present but with prices bottoming out at $10 a barrel back then the report was dismissed because of the higher cost of horizontal drilling techniques that would be needed, estimated at $20-$40 a barrel.

It was not until 2007, when EOG Resources of Texas started a frenzy when they drilled a single well in Parshal N.D. that is expected to yield 700,000 barrels of oil that real excitement and money started to flow in North Dakota. Marathon Oil is investing $1.5 billion and drilling 300 new wells in what is expected to be one of the greatest booms in Oil discovery since Oil was discovered in Saudi Arabia in 1938.

The US imported about 14 million barrels of Oil per day in 2007 , which means US consumers sent about $340 Billion Dollars over seas building palaces in Dubai and propping up unfriendly regimes around the World, if 200 billion barrels of oil at $90 a barrel are recovered in the high plains the added wealth to the US economy would be $18 Trillion Dollars which would go a long way in stabilizing the US trade deficit and could cut the cost of oil in half in the long run.

Explore posts in the same categories: OPEC

27 Comments on “Massive Untapped Oil Fields in North and South Dakota”

  1. Blackdog Says:

    The truth is, we have plenty of oil here in the US, and we have know about it for several years. Since oil went over $40/bbl, it has been economically feasible to extract oild from shale. Horizontal drilling is not that new a technique, either.,1299,DRMN_86_4051709,00.html

    So why are we paying for $100+/bbl of oil?
    Because there is money to be made, and our politicians don’t want to do anything to change that.
    They could force them to use local resources, stop importing, etc. Make them use new technology, but they don’t. As China and India come online as massive pertoleum consumers (they will far outstrip the US), there will be money to be made when the oil in the Middle East is depleted, or difficult to get (requiring cracking, CO2 or water flooding, etc) to get. One line of thinking could be that once that happens, we will have them (oil consumers) by the balls, because we have more oil reserves in shale that the rest of the world has in liquid.
    But the only way that would truly pan out is to make the third world slave to our oil (opposite of what it is today), and have us independent of it. We need some other solution. Something renewable, and I am not talking about wind, or magic fairies or electricity (that is a fallacy anyway, since the electricity meeds to be created – usually in coal or gas-fired generators). We need to be way ahead in nuclear fuels, renewable fuels, and things we haven’t even thought of.

    The other way to look at this is that we need to come online, and undercut the oil prices of the minions. But we have an oil-based economy, so that would have some negative impacts as well. We would need to have the gub-ment ready first, with policies about buying our oil, and not letting us (US) lose jobs because we are choking off the minions (which is what would happen, if uncontrolled).

    One final thing – Oil prices on the spot market are set by people in New York and Chicago. These people sell oil to the highest bidder. That highest bidder is likely some 25 year old dumbass right out of college. One of the downsides of capitalism. The “news” that they trade on is way over hyped, and the decisions they make defy common sense. I don’t want the government capping oil prices, because that would be 10x worse, but we need to have better controls on oil trading.

  2. joan siegel Says:

    I don’t understand why have I never heard about this oil deposit? I heard about it today thank god on Rush Limbaugh today. Are we going to drill for the oil?

  3. Joan Siegel,

    If we can keep the tree huggers out of court, then, “you betcha’.”

  4. Sarah Says:

    We still have a problem. We need more refineries. Tree huggers and indian tribes have stalled permits in az. The refinery should have been up and running by now. It went to court. Everything was ruled in refinery’s favor but guess what. It had been stalled so long that the permits expired. Now they are back to applying for permits. I hope they can get refineries built faster then the az one.

  5. Marcia Davidson Says:

    I think we should forget about drilling for oil and look to alternative sources of energy. Sooner or later ALL oil reserves will be depleted. Nobody will have to worry about the price of oil because there won’t BE any oil to buy.

  6. Vitto Says:

    Marcia and others:
    We need oil now! This is a God sent opportunity to rid ourself of dependency on foriegn oil……I don’t disagree on alternative sources policy. However, because of the emense coruption and greed by world wide monied interests and an almost disinterested American voter…….The mogels and tree hugers are continuing to manipulate and control our way of life……We need to wake up! Get involved! Get educated! Maybe…maybe we might have a chance at winning back our great republic that our Founders carefully crafted……

    • Drew Says:

      “We need oil now! This is a God sent opportunity to rid ourself of dependency on foriegn (sic) oil”

      By your reasoning, the oil in Saudi Arabia was a God sent opportunity for the Arabs to have us be dependent on their oil.

      Don’t waste your time blaming the treeh huggers. They’re a small number, do not sit on the boards of BP, Exxon, etc, and have little power in Obama administration.

      Keep driving and paying the Arabs.

  7. Rob Says:

    This oil find and no action when our economy is being wrecked by the day with inflated oil prices disgusts me. Both political parties are to blame for not passing a comprehensive energy bill.

    Right now the Gub-ment could and should build a refinery at the site offered in Mt (Malstrom AFB) and immediately start a a massive coal to liquid fuels program for the military.

    The co2 problem in the conversion process can be handled by the ThermoEnergy Tips system( another underfunded clear choice for clean coal.

  8. Matt Says:


    According to the USGS report the actual number of barrels of oil in the Bakken field is about 3.65 billion barrels along with 1.85 trillion cubic feet of natural gas. Nowhere near the 175 to 500 billion cited above.

    This is directly from the USGS site:

  9. Matt,

    Ouch! That is CONSIDERABLY less oil…

    After reading the report here:

    And, a tidbit of info here:

    “The reported 3.65 billion barrels of oil mean estimate is for ‘undiscovered’ oil only, and doesn’t include known oil, such as reserves.”

    In other words, if I’m understanding this, the report is an estimate of how many barrels of oil can be recovered from the Bakken field using existing technology. The computer models are still showing >200 billion barrels of oil in the ground, but new drilling techniques need to be invented to access the rest of that oil…

    Kinda’ sucks, doesn’t it?


  10. Richard Popovich Says:

    Enough of this Middle-Eastern oil nonsense already. The United States of America has raditionally been the leader in every advance in science, technology, energy, medicine and every positive development that has benifitted every other nation on earth. Our leaders have known that America has the natural resourses to put an end to our dependence on foreign crude but have allowed enviornmentalism get in the way of common sense.

    A “Drill Here, Drill Now.” bumper sticker should be on the back of every vehicle in the USA. Not only are our pocketbook’s in peril, but our national security is in peril as well. Our dependence on foreign oil places America at a strategic disadvantage.

    We need to utilize our own oil fields, build new refineries and continue working on alternative energy technologies. We also need to end the transfer of American technology advances to China, Indonesia and India and use that technology to strenghthen our own economy. We’ve given away enough.

    This fight to lower fuel prices is just the tip of the economic iceberg and it involves more than just economics. It involves our freedoms, our national survival and our Constitutional form of government. If we allow politicians to advance the leftist ideology of enviornmentalism and socialistic government we will lose America.

  11. Gnarbars Says:

    Treehuggers? Would that make you all planet-rapists?

  12. Gnarbars,

    Spare me the phony guilt trip.

    Allocating 3 square feet per person, the entire world’s population can fit inside a circle roughly 20 miles in diameter.

    So, get a grip. No one here is “raping” the planet. We all very much care about our little rock in space. But, unlike you tree-huggers, we believe in responsible management of our natural resources.

    You tree-huggers do your best to blame loggers for de-forestation, but the truth of the matter is that logging companies RESPONSIBLY replace the old-growth trees (which are MAJOR fire hazards – kicking up tons of pollutants and CO2 when they burn, I might add) with younger, more fire resistant saplings.

    A young, growing tree processes infinitely more CO2 than an old slow to non growing tree.

    The more lumber that is processed, the more young trees that are planted. The more young trees that are planted, the more CO2 that is processed out of the environment.

    But there’s always some damn endangered snail that the “environmentalists” are trying to save or some rich, spoiled Berkeley chicks with hairy arm-pits building a tree house (made of wood, I might add) so that they can get their 1 minute of fame on the 5:00 o’clock news.

    So, by preventing the loggers from doing their jobs, tree-huggers are actually adding to the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere.

    As to oil drilling on land, what’s the problem? Oil companies are now among some of the greatest environmentally friendly companies that you will ever find. Their impact is minimal on the land and surrounding eco-system. In fact, oil companies go out of there way to reduce their impact and leave the area in better condition than they found it.

    Here’s what Shell Oil is doing right now:

    “We continually look for ways to reduce the environmental impact of our operations, products and services and are working with partners to safeguard the environment. In the U.S., Shell is involved in the protection of the unique ecosystem of coastal Louisiana and has partnered with several local and national groups such as America’s Wetland Campaign working to preserve the state’s natural assets.”

    So, tree-huggers who block oil companies from drilling oil are actually reducing the chances of responsible wildlife and eco-management of those tracts of land.

    Now, let’s continue onward to offshore drilling:

    According to the U.S. Minerals Management Service, some 620,500 barrels of oil ooze organically from North America’s ocean floors each year. Compare this to the average 6,555 barrels that oil companies have spilled annually since 1998.

    Let me put that in perspective:

    Mother Nature is 95 times dirtier than man!

    • Steve Says:

      The tree huggers know everything you’ve said is true, but they deny it or refuse to debate it, because that’s not what the Opec countries are PAYING them for! None of them really give a rats ass about their “life ambitions to save the world” All they’re doing is making sure they get a kick back every time a refinery goes unbuilt, a new housing addition burns, or they manage to find a Kangaroo Rat to ” Save” If they really want to do some good, they should turn themselves into fertilizer for the trees we’ll harvest in the next decade!

    • joe bob Says:

      Why do you need to be obnoxious and throw names around. You sound like you’ve run out of cogent arguments and are just resorting to name calling. Grow up and learn how to debate rationally

      • What? Nothing left to debate, moron? All you did was whine like a baby.

        C’mon, let’s rumble. Throw down some facts and we can play; else, quit your bellyaching and run home to your mama, little boy!


  13. Dear sir, I am very interested in this article. I hear they are begging for people to come there and work. How do I submit my name to these people to get there attention? Is there any way you can help me or advise me on this? thank you for your attention. Sincerely, Russell Peterson.

  14. Kurt Says:

    Um….WE do not have any oil. The oil companies that drill and remove the oil do (or will) and THEY will sell it to China, India, or whomever else they see fit. The American people do not own this oil.

  15. Earl Says:

    So, who would be paying to keep all of this quiet? Who would change the number of barrels available under the surface of the land mass of the US? How about the same people we’re paying billions for their oil? You don’t think they don’t know what would happen if the truth came out? They’ll pay anything to keep the US from drilling. Who backs the tree huggers? Those same people! Why does the government want to grab 10 million acres of land out west? They are in the pockets of the middle eastern cartels! Money can buy treason. Money can buy silence! Money can buy ignorance! How many people have heard of the discoveries out west? Spread the word for the sake of our country.

  16. Ronin Says:

    Earl, don’t make us guess. Tell us who you think is doing it. Btw, you do not have to put in a URL to post, just leave it blank if you want. It saves me time of removing dead or useless links.

  17. Don Says:

    People we need to get this out front pages in are newspappers,main stories on the evening news.We don”t need another depression we need an oil revolution.Tell everyone and what can we do now is what we should be asking are selves.We need people start contacting yuor congress person.Who can help with a web site?

  18. Anthony Says:

    Hello, I’m glad I found this site and with the exception of a few individuals I think the posts are quite educational. Now being a self proclaimed tree hugger, I would like to make a few comments about the USA’s untapped oil potential. As a “Tree Hugger” I have no problems with oil production or exploration and most of the individuals I know in the “Tree Hugger” circle do not have an issue with it either. After all how do you think we get to our meetings? What we do have a problem with are companies that bypass safety for profit because in the end when this happens, we the taxpayer, pay the price to clean it up. If the environmental disaster in the Gulf does not prove this then I’m not sue anything will. So how do the companies continue to get away with their actions? Well first they teach you to hate someone, in this case the “Tree Hugger”, so you will not be watching them. This way when they want legislation, they can push it through claiming the environmental people are stalling it. We are continually surprised how our names are added to something we had no issues with in the first place.

    In the past couple of years, our wonderful government was able to pass legislation allowing certain “Gifts” to be given to campaigns without disclosing who it was from. Because of this legislation, it will be harder to trace the money. UG! One of the biggest donators of money this past election was from Saudi Arabia. Don’t worry people, both Democrats and Republicans shared in this money equally. Don’t you just love it when our Government works together? How are we going to change the price of fuel? I think the first thing that needs to happen is to get oil off of the commodities market. This will have to be done by the people and I think we all know we can not rely on our elected officials to do this because they seem to be preoccupied with sex these days. It would be great to see the people come together to make this change. We need stop allowing people to teach us hate and move forward as a group.

    These are just some issues I would like to point out and would welcome input from others on the issues. Now before you label me a left wing nut job, please know I’m a moderate Republican that believes in fair business practices for everyone in our country. Thank you for reading this note.

    • PB-in-AL Says:

      Anthony – I appreciate your candor to say where you stand. I consider myself a conservative independent, leaning towards libertarianism (minus the nutcases). You’re right on the one hand about the profit motive vs. safety. Standard Oil and many others back around the turn of the 20th century were doing whatever it took to turn a profit, responsibility be damned. I don’t necessarily think that was the case in the Gulf. There was a lot of federal manipulation there too. We could have handled the spill with the help of the Netherlands, so it wouldn’t have gotten so bad. But O-boy and his puppeteers determined that they wanted a crisis to exploit, hence the delay, and exacerbation of the problem.

      I think that lobbying has become one of the most dastardly cuts to our governmental processes. And you’re right, both parties are as culpable as the other. But I think you’re confusing issues.

      While the demonizing of opposing views isn’t helpful for a conversation, it is to shut it down. Thus, the radical environmentalists have been the ones to shut down the conversation about exploring our vast oil resources. As soon as the shale oil is brought up, or additional drilling in the Gulf or ANWR, the greenies start hollering (often literally) about owls, fish, polar bears, Exxon Valdez, BP, CO2, global warming, etc., etc. They don’t want to talk about compromise. And by greenies, I specifically am talking about the Sierra Club, Greenpeace, Al Gore, and a host of others. The demonization tends to go the other direction more often, if you’ve spent any time reading Nat’l Geo, NYT, Newsweek, Nature, Scientific American, etc. Generally, the narrative cites some extreme case of heart-string pulling, e.g. polar bears, then changes to damning the eevil corporations who want to kill the Coca-cola polar bears, isn’t it sad. They rarely actually discuss the issues using facts.

      So let’s step back into the discussion. We’ll leave out imprecations against “greenies” and “evil corporations”. We are at a cross-roads, actually we passed it a little while back, but we can possibly turn around again to go a different direction. Our current sources of oil in the middle east are in a state of serious unrest. They hate our guts anyhow; they’ve just been willing to deal with us to enrich themselves. Of course, that really only applies to the folks running those countries, but that’s a whole ‘nother discussion.

      So what do we do? We are aware of huge oil deposits in the Gulf, in the ANWR, in the shales of the upper Midwest. The government to this point has restricted drilling in shallow parts of the Gulf, last year enacted effective moratioria on deep-water drilling, in opposition to court orders. They have also prevented any drilling in ANWR, and shale-oil exploration. Why?

      Sure there are possibilities of accidents. Sure there is the chance that a large catastrophe will happen; but maybe not.

      Here’s where pragmatic conservation comes into play. We have the technology to begin to utilize all of these resources. The government has yielded to “what ifs” for too long. Here’s one: “What if the middle east completely collapses into sharia and they refuse to do business with us?” Even if the gov’t opens up the strategic reserve for us to get to work, that will only last so long. Then what? In spite of all the bluster about “alternative energy sources” they simply aren’t effective. Some need more time for the tech to mature; some are just dumb. But we need to do SOMETHING NOW. We have the resources, the supplies, and the technology to utilize these oil-bearing areas now.

      Shall we sacrifice our nation’s economic, and our, and our neighbor’s personal well-being on the altar of an owl, or guppy, or CO2? One way to address your issue of foreign money is to eliminate them as a player, here you go. One way to address your issue of gas prices is to produce it domestically, without undue governmental restrictions. Yes, there needs to be oversight, for safety, both environmental and personal; however, what the EPA and Interior Dept. are doing now is onerous and effectively shuts down the possibility of domestic production.

      I agree that the change has to come from “We the people”. I believe that the first part of that happened last November. Unfortunately, there are too many congress-critters that like the status quo, and are willing to go to bat for it. They need to be summarily trounced out of office, regardless of party. Our elected officials, all the way to the top, need to believe that the United States of America is exceptional, is worth fighting for, and is worth standing alone, if need be. I’m tired of the “one world”, “global community” rhetoric. There are people out there, nations and their leaders, who want to see us fail. How’s that for “global community”?

      I’m not calling for the old late-19th century isolationism. But there has to be a “USA first” perspective in all 3 branches of our government. Why do we care about middle eastern, islamic, scientific self-perception? Why should NASA devote one second of time to it? Why is it our job to support the UN to the degree we are? Why did we pay nearly a billion dollars to the Palestinian Authority? Seems we don’t have the money. I stand with the congressmen who are opposing the “short-term” budget measures. They’re serious about doing what needs to be done to right the ship of this nation. We’re listing badly, bailing hasn’t helped. It’s time for serious repair.

      I know that I rambled a bit. I hope that this can forward the discussion. I also hope that I managed to be considerate.

  19. […] decided to do some research on the untapped oil in our country, I first found websites and blogs complaining about environmentalists’ movements to cease their complaints about drilling, and […]

  20. orville elza Says:

    Beleave this story on oil. We own the land and they know its their and they have drill the test wells and they are dragging there feet not no drill.Why would they not want to start to get the oil out of the ground?

  21. Dawn Says:

    I find that our discussions and constant rhetoric about oil drilling as been saying the same thing since 2008. Has anyone seen any progress actually being made in drilling for oil and building refineries in this country since any of this discussion began? I pray Obama administration is out of office for not allowing the Keystone project to go through. Serves those who oppose this action right for the prices we are paying today. It shows we are very dependent on foreign oil from others countries by giving sanctions to Iran, who is our biggest enemy right now. Shame on you Pres. Obama for not rectifying this countries problems when you had an opportunity to, or at least not look at a compromise so Keystone does not have to start over. For those of us who have been without jobs for years this project could of worked to put America back to work. For those who criticize what I am saying must be drawing a paycheck every week or you would no what I am talking about. I live in AZ and there is no jobs.

  22. June Ganser Says:

    Can you put out a map to show all county’s that contain oil. Like does it run from Grand Forks area to Red River Valley to south east corner of N.D. We no it run’s all over the west part of N.D, but what about eastern part?

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