Posted at 3:00 PM on May 15, 2012
by Paul Tosto
North Dakota's transformation as an oil producing state is no secret. But when you look at the historical data, it's breathtaking how rapidly things have changed.
"North Dakota passed Alaska in March to become the second-leading state in crude oil production, trailing only Texas, according to officials from Alaska and North Dakota ... a dramatic rise for a state that was behind seven other states in 2006," the Fargo Forum reports.
Texas remains the nation's number one oil production state by far, pumping about 50 million barrels a month. Alaska for decades was comfortably number 2. But check out the trend lines below.
Here's a closer look at the past three years
Advances in drilling technology and methods, together with the rising price of oil, have made large-scale drilling profitable in North Dakota.
Times are great now in North Dakota and the money's rolling in. But there's also a lesson in the trend lines to remember: It doesn't last.
I think the important thing about this graph is that even with North Dakota's oil "boom", the U.S. overall is still pumping less than it did even a decade ago. This is just a momentary blip on an otherwise downward trajectory.
"Times are great now in North Dakota and the money's rolling in. But there's also a lesson in the trend lines to remember: It doesn't last."
Great? Ask the people who are spending thousands of dollars a month on housing. Ask the people who's small town is being overrun with truck traffic and pollution. Ask the animals and plants who are disrupted by the drilling. Ask the air and water who are being polluted by it all. Great? Short-term gains; very high long-term losses.