It is the largest oil play in the U.S. and now the Permian Basin has yielded more barrels of oil than ever before. The production of the play in West Texas came to 815 million barrels in 2017. The previous record was 790 million in 1973 according to IHS Markit.
“The magnitude of the rebound in the Permian Basin liquids production is unprecedented,” said Reed Almstead, an analyst with the company. “Not so long ago, many in the industry were saying the Permian was dead.”
As the Houston Chronicle reported, an average of 2.16 million barrels of oil and gas liquids a day were pumped in 1973. But this year’s average is 2.75 million, or a 25 percent increase.
By the end of 2018, experts believe it could reach 10.5 million barrels a day—a new all-time high. Some energy researchers believe the basin, first giving up oil in the 1920s, still has as much as 70 billion barrels of technically recoverable resources.
The Basin has already pumped more than 39 billion barrels of oil in the past 90 years.
“The implications for U.S. energy security are significant,” Olmstead said, “since we have become, in a relatively short period of time, more self-sufficient in terms of energy supply and are less reliant on imports.”