New Domestic Production Plan

The United States has discovered and undiscovered, technically recoverable conventional petroleum resources estimated at 165 billion barrels, not including areas where drilling is officially prohibited.  Additionally, we have several unconventional resources that represent trillions of barrels of oil equivalent; oil shale alone could exceed 6 trillion barrels.  Our total domestic resources represent nearly 48 times Saudi Arabia's proved oil reserves of over 260 billion barrels and over 400 years worth of total world oil consumption at today's rate of about 83 million barrels per day.  We have the resources, yet we still import over 13 million barrels of petroleum and liquid fuels daily due to restrictions on their lease and/or development as well as a lack of political will that would encourage their use.

The Energy Information Administration (EIA) produces a report called the Annual Energy Outlook each year that forecasts total energy production and consumption through 2030.  The EIA 2008 Annual Energy Outlook forecasts that petroleum and liquid fuels consumption will increase from about 20 million barrels per day now to about 22.8 million barrels per day in 2030.  It also forecasts that total petroleum imports will decline, falling by about 10% in 2020, and then rise, ending at about the same as current levels in 2030.  Total domestic oil production in 2030 is estimated to be 5.6 million barrels per day in the EIA reference case.

The following sections provide the details of our plan for increasing domestic oil and liquid fuels production by at least 13 million barrels per day in order to meet the forecasted demand in 2030.  The new production would eliminate imports and, if desired, could generate sufficient exports to make us the "swing" provider, capable of controlling the floor and ceiling for world oil prices.  Note that only oil resource production is addressed directly.  Natural gas production will increase indirectly because of oil exploration and drilling.

Our production plan covers areas not specifically included in the reference case of the EIA forecast and increases the EIA projections for the ANWR access case, OCS access case, oil shale, coal to liquids, and enhanced oil recovery (EOR).

The projections are based on increased emphasis and political support for significantly expanded domestic production using all available resources.  They make the assumption that restrictions, moratoria, statutory bans, bureaucratic red tape, regulatory delays, and judicial challenges will be eliminated or significantly reduced and that the additional infrastructure required will be available when needed.

Alaska
Total conventional oil and gas deposits in Northern Alaska are estimated to exceed 46 billion barrels of oil and 192 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.  We could achieve up to 4 - 5 million barrels per day of new production in addition to the EIA estimates of about 300,000 barrels per day in 2030 from already existing or planned production.  The following sections detail our projections for Alaskan production.  Note that increases in production for Alaska will be limited by the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System (TAPS) capacity of 2.136 million barrels per day until additional pipeline capacity is brought on-line.

 ANWR 1002
The ANWR 1002 area has an estimated 10 billion barrels of recoverable crude oil.  It has been under strict moratorium since 1980 and has had only minimal seismic and geophysical analysis.  We could easily achieve up to 2 million barrels per day within 6 years of production beginning.

 Alaska OCS
The Alaska OCS areas have estimated oil deposits exceeding 26 billion barrels and natural gas deposits in excess of 132 trillion cubic feet.  We could achieve up to 1 million barrels per day within 6 - 8 years of production beginning, rising to 2 million barrels per day or more within 12 - 15 years.

 NPR-A
Estimates of NPR-A oil and natural gas deposits are in excess of 10 billion barrels of recoverable oil and 60 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.  Oil deposits within the NPR-A area are believed to exist mainly in smaller formations and thus we only anticipate up to 1 million barrels per day within 6 - 8 years of production beginning.

Outer Continental Shelf (OCS)
The lower 48 OCS areas include the Gulf of Mexico, the Atlantic coast, and the Pacific coast.  Estimates of undiscovered and technically recoverable resources are about 58 billion barrels of oil and about 287 trillion cubic feet natural gas.  We could achieve up to 2 - 4 million barrels per day of new OCS production in addition to the EIA estimates of about 1.9 million barrels per day from already existing or planned production and the less than 200,000 barrels per day forecast in the EIA OCS access case.  The following sections detail our projections for OCS production.

 Gulf of Mexico
The estimates of recoverable oil and gas deposits in the Gulf are about 45 billion barrels of oil and about 232 trillion cubic feet natural gas.  We could achieve up to 1 million barrels per day within 3 - 4 years of production beginning, rising to as much as 2 million barrels per day within 10 - 12 years, due to the depth of experience in the Gulf and the large infrastructure already in place nearby.

 East Coast
The estimates of recoverable oil and gas deposits off the East coast are about 4 billion barrels of oil and about 37 trillion cubic feet natural gas.  We only anticipate up to 250,000 barrels per day within 6 - 8 years of production beginning.

 West Coast
The estimates of West coast recoverable oil and gas deposits are about 10 billion barrels of oil and about 18 trillion cubic feet natural gas.  We could achieve up to 1 million barrels per day within 3 - 4 years of production beginning, rising to as much as 2 million barrels per day in 8 - 10 years.

Unconventional
The areas where unconventional domestic production can be increased beyond the EIA reference case include the Bakken formation, oil shale, CTL, heavy oil/tar sands, and enhanced oil recovery.  We could achieve total new production from unconventional sources that exceeds 8 million barrels per day by 2030 and it could reach 14 million barrels per day or more if desired.  The following sections detail our projections for unconventional resource production increases.

 Bakken
The Bakken formation in Williston basin is estimated to contain in excess of 400 billion barrels of oil.  Recoverable oil estimates range from 1% - 50% and a recent re-assessment indicates 3.65 billion barrels of technically recoverable oil with current technology.  We could easily achieve production of at least 1 million additional barrels per day within 10 years, in addition to the EIA forecast of about 250,000 barrels per day increase in the entire Rocky Mountain area by 2030.

 Oil Shale
We have over 75% of the world's known oil shale deposits, the largest of which is the Green River formation in western Colorado, southeastern Utah, and southern Wyoming.  A strong commitment to developing this resource could provide 1 - 2 million barrels per day within 8 - 10 years and anywhere from 4 - 10 million barrels per day by 2030.

 Coal to Liquids (CTL)
We have about 27% of the world's known coal reserves.  Coal gasification and liquefaction technologies would allow the production of millions of barrels of liquid fuels daily.  We could easily achieve in excess of 1 million barrels per day, in addition to the EIA forecast of 40,000 barrels per day, within 10 years and at least 2 - 3 million barrels per day by 2030.

 Heavy Oil/Tar Sands
We have over 100 billion barrels of heavy oil resources and 60 - 80 billion barrels of oil in tar sands, the bulk of which are located California, Alaska, and Utah.  California currently produces about 400,000 barrels per day of heavy oil and no commercial production of tar sands occurs in the U.S.  We could achieve at least 1 - 2 million barrels per day of additional production by 2030.

 Enhanced Oil Recovery
An estimated 374 billion barrels of oil are "stranded" in already developed oil fields in the U.S.  Current EOR technology, mainly using CO2 injection, is estimated to provide the ability to recover up to 110 billion barrels of that oil.  We expect that sufficient quantities of CO2 can be captured from other initiatives in our energy independence plan to produce at least 1 million barrels per day in addition to the approximately 1 million barrels per day projected by EIA in 2030.  Another 1 million barrels per day could reasonably be expected from future EOR technology by 2030.

A table summarizing the EIA forecast oil production and the new production achievable from each source is available here.
Significant additional infrastructure, identified here, will be required to support all of the new production.