The Bakken Formation is not North Dakota’s first oil and gas boom

The latest issue of The New York Times Magazine features a cover story about how advances in horizontal drilling technology have transformed North Dakota’s seemingly dismal future into one of possibility and abundance. Since drillers began using hydraulic fracturing to extract oil and gas from the Williston Basin’s Bakken Formation seven years ago, the region now accounts for 91 percent of the state’s oil production – the total of which accounts for 11 percent of U.S. oil production, the article said.  Whereas previously North Dakota was desperately trying to come up with ideas to spur economic development and retain its dwindling population, the state is now working with a $3.8 billion surplus to address the strains that have developed as a result of its oil and gas industry’s rampant growth: spikes in crime, car accidents, rental rates and pollution, as well as the need to perform necessary upgrades to infrastructure and to hire from out of state to fill positions. For more, read the full story.