The International Energy Agency recently reported it expects the United States to quickly outpace Russia as the world's largest oil producer. The Paris-based agency estimates the U.S. shale oil boom will put the country in a top spot by 2015, Bloomberg reported.
The shift also means the United States will likely be close to becoming energy self-sufficient in the next 20 years, the IEA said. Successful shale plays in North Dakota and Texas will be the major drivers behind increased oil production in the United States. The use of hydraulic fracturing in these oil and gas fields will make it possible for energy companies to explore and produce increasing amounts of resources, Bloomberg reported.
As of mid-October, U.S. crude oil production rose to 7.896 million barrels per day, Bloomberg reported. That is the most the country has produced since March 1989, according to Energy Information Administration data.
U.S. will dominate, but not for long
However, while North American oil output will grow in the near future, the energy agency does not expect the U.S. energy revolution to significantly impact OPEC (the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries) dominance on world oil supplies.
“The United States moves steadily towards meeting all of its energy needs from domestic resources by 2035,” the IEA reported. “But this does not mean that the world is on the cusp of a new era of oil abundance. Light, tight oil shakes the next 10 years, but leaves the longer term unstirred.”
The IEA expects the United State's oil output to plateau after 2020 and move from the top spot of leading oil producer by the beginning of the 2030s. By 2035, global oil demand will reach 14 million barrels, averaging 101 million bpd, the IEA reported.
OPEC members currently supply about 40 percent of global oil supplies, Bloomberg reported. Middle Eastern countries will continue to remain at the center of long-term oil supplies, the IEA said.
OPEC members are: Algeria, Angola, Ecuador, Iraq, Iran, Kuwait, Libya, Nigeria, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Venezuela.
Some of these countries have seen their oil exports to the U.S. decline in recent years due to North America increasing domestic production, MarketWatch reported. OPEC oil demand will fall below 30 million bpd until 2018, the IEA forecasts, as North American output rises by 3.9 million bpd between 2012 and 2018.
As the U.S. continues to increase oil output from its shale plays, energy companies can ensure production remains stable by using Broadwind Energy's gears and gearboxes, which are found in frac pump drives. Broadwind offers a variety of precision gears and gearboxes, including Gleason spiral bevel gears, that make fracturing operations reliable and effective.