U.S. Has More Oil Reserves Than Saudi Arabia
A new independent estimate of world oil reserves has been released by energy consultants Rystad Energy, showing that the U.S. now holds more recoverable oil reserves than both Saudi Arabia and Russia.
For the U.S., more than 50 percent of remaining oil reserves is unconventional shale oil. Texas alone holds more than 60 billion barrels of shale oil according to this new data.
Rystad Energy now estimates total global oil reserves at 2092 billion barrels, or 70 times the current production rate of about 30 billion barrels of crude oil per year.
Cumulatively produced oil up to 2015 amounts to 1,300 billion barrels. Unconventional oil recovery accounts for 30 percent of the global recoverable oil reserves while offshore accounts for 33 percent of the total. The seven major oil companies hold less than 10 percent of the total.
This data confirms that there is a relatively limited amount of recoverable oil left on the planet, says Per Magnus Nysveen, Head of Analysis at Rystad Energy. “With the global car-park possibly doubling from one billion to two billion cars over the next 30 years, it becomes very clear that oil alone cannot satisfy the growing need for individual transport.”
Rystad Energy's analysis also shows that, for the first time since the 1980s, there will have two consecutive years of decreased global exploration and production investment. A lot of the investment cuts have been related to new projects and shale drilling, but the analysts have also observed lower activity on mature producing fields.
This decreased activity is starting to show on the production side, with the decline rates starting to increase. Higher declines were observed for several of the major non-OPEC countries such as Russia, United States, Canada and Norway in 2014 and 2015. For 2016, the decline is expected to continue increasing and in terms of barrels, this represents a 700 kbbl/d increase in the yearly decline from the mature oil fields.