The United States may have reclaimed the title of the world's biggest oil producer sooner than expected.
The United States likely surpassed Russian Federation and Saudi Arabia to become the world's largest crude oil producer earlier this year, based on preliminary estimates in EIA's Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO).
If those estimates are right, it would mark the first time since 1973 that the USA has led the world in output, according to government figures.
Although following the June 22 agreement between OPEC and Russian Federation to up production to rein in prices Russian Federation increased its output by more than 200,000 bpd, the average since the start of the year is higher for the United States, where drillers have evidently taken full advantage of higher prices and relatively low costs.
Fracking is driving a drilling boom in the Permian Basin under Texas and New Mexico.
"US crude-oil production exceeded that of Saudi Arabia for the first time in more than two decades", the US Energy Information Administration reported Tuesday. When gas prices topped $4 during the Obama administration, many producers turned to fracking and output soared.
And much of the U.S.'s crude production comes via Texas, which is on track to produce more oil than Iraq and Iran in 2019.
The Gulf of Mexico and Texas will continue to lead the way in USA production, with Texas-and more specifically the Permian-shining particularly bright. However, after crude oil prices increased in early 2016, investment and production began increasing later that year.
Based on preliminary estimates, America - which earlier in the year surpassed Saudi Arabia - is now the top producer, marking the first time since 1973 that the USA has led the world in output.
Saudi Arabia's crude oil and other liquids production data are EIA internal estimates. Until the last few years, it seemed far-fetched that the US would ever regain the No. 1 spot.
Conditions are ripe for a further increase in US production.