The Wall Street Journal (1/17, Williams, Subscription Publication) reports Wednesday BP issued its annual energy forecast, and said rising North American shale oil production will pressure OPEC to cut its crude production, leaving the largest buffer in global oil supplies in more than 10 years. The Journal says BP’s forecast underscores the map re-drawing effects of the current North American shale boom. The forecast, which discussed the global energy industry through 2030, also said that by that time there wouldn’t be a significant shale boom outside of North America, as investment conditions for unconventional gas and oil in Asia and Europe will remain less favorable. BP chief economist Christof Ruehl said the US might surpass Saudi Arabia as the world’s biggest hydocarbon liquids producer this year, highlighting the rapid progress of growth in the shale oil and gas fields. The report also predicted by 2030 the US will be importing only 1% of its yearly energy needs, versus 30% in 2005.
by Rob Lillpopp