U.S. crude oil production surged last year by the largest volume in more than 100 years.
American producers pumped an additional 1.2 million barrels per day of crude oil and condensate in 2014 compared with the year before, reaching 8.7 million daily barrels, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
It was the largest increase in production since record keeping started in 1900, according to the agency.
“Most of the increase during 2014 came from tight oil plays in North Dakota, Texas, and New Mexico where hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling were used to produce oil from shale formations,” the agency said in a report.
The Bakken formation in North Dakota, the Permian Basin in West Texas and eastern New Mexico, and the Eagle Ford Shale in South Texas have been driving crude oil production increases for each of the last six years.
Though oil and condensate production is expected to rise this year again, the growth isn’t expected to be as robust. Crude oil prices have been slashed in half since last summer.
That’s pushing drilling into the best areas of established oil fields and eliminating drilling in the more economically marginal regions.
EIA’s latest Short-Term Energy Outlook anticipates crude oil production to grow at 8.1 percent this year and 1.5 percent next year.