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Apr 8 / Dave Schumaker

Bakken Report to be Released Thursday

According to Business Week, the much anticipated USGS report about oil in the Bakken Formation will be released on Thursday.

Julie LeFever, a geologist with the state Geological Survey in Grand Forks, has been studying the Bakken for more than two decades. She calls it an “unconventional resource.”

The oil is trapped in microscopic pores of rock, and to capture it, most companies “fracture stimulate” horizontal wells by forcing pressurized fluid and sand to break pores in the rock and prop them open to recover oil.

“It’s not something you would see in most oil formations,” LeFever said. With technology, she said, “the success rates are going up, but we’re not all the way there yet.”

She said estimates of the total amount of oil in the Bakken Formation have varied wildly over the years, from 10 billion barrels to 500 billion barrels. The higher estimate was done by Leigh Price, a USGS geologist who died in 2000 before his study was published.

We recently discussed this topic on April 3rd, but had not been able to verify when the report was actually going to be released. In our last post, a commenter named Ben broke down what these numbers actually mean.

[Via Business Week]

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