From Energy News:
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.
Let's put it this way: Saudi Arabia has about 260 billion barrels of known oil reserves. Even at the lower end of the estimate, the US would have more oil than Saudi Arabia.
The real problem is will Democrats let us drill the oil? Will they let us build refineries to process that oil? Because of the bureacratic environmental mess that the tree huggers have created in this country, we haven't built an oil refinery since 1976.
Imagine the United States being able to meet its entire energy needs at, say, $40 a barrel, which is the high end of the estimate made in 1999. That would knock oil prices down to about $1.20 per gallon. We can live with that and tell OPEC and Hugo Chavez to take a hike.
The question is whether the environmental wackos will let America save itself from foreign oil domination or will they find a Red-Feathered Speckled Titbird to stop us from tapping our natural resources.