“U.S. Shale Oil Resources Are Three Times Larger Than the Current Oil Reserves in Saudi Arabia.”
YET CONGRESS RECENTLY VOTED TO MAKE IT ILLEGAL TO DEVELOP U.S. OIL SHALE RESOURCES
With oil prices at an all-time high, Americans are facing escalating gas, diesel, and aircraft fuel increases. Oil prices are projected to increase further.
Congress, however, has made it illegal to develop vast domestic oil resources in large parts of the United States.
The most startling Congressional prohibition on domestic oil production concerns the recently enacted ban on the development of oil shale resources in parts of Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming in the Green River Formation. According to a Rand Study estimate, this reserve contains over one trillion barrels of oil, with 800 billion barrels fully recoverable, or three times the current oil reserves as Saudi Arabia:
The largest known oil shale deposits in the world are in the Green River Formation, which covers portions of Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming. Estimates of the oil resource in place within the Green River Formation range from 1.5 to 1.8 trillion barrels. Not all resources in place are recoverable. For potentially recoverable oil shale resources, we roughly derive an upper bound of 1.1 trillion barrels of oil and a lower bound of about 500 billion barrels. For policy planning purposes, it is enough to know that any amount in this range is very high. For example, the midpoint in our estimate range, 800 billion barrels, is more than triple the proven oil reserves of Saudi Arabia. Present U.S. demand for petroleum products is about 20 million barrels per day. If oil shale could be used to meet a quarter of that demand, 800 billion barrels of recoverable resources would last for more than 400 years.”
(James T. Bartis, et. al., "Oil Shale Development in the United States: Prospects and Policy Issues" (Santa Monica: RAND Corporation, 2005), p. ix. http://rand.org/pubs/monographs/2005/RAND_MG414.pdf)