Oil prices are going up, food prices too. And so are the number of oil wells being drilled in the US. According to the American Petroleum Institute, more than 17,000 new oil wells were tapped in 2007, the most active pace since 1990.

Reuters has reported one such case that signifies changing times.  What is of significance is that this new oil boom is looking for unconventional, rather than conventional oil.

“George Stapleton has been in the oil business for 30 years, helping plumb sands and shale across the Middle East, Asia and Europe. Now the chief executive of MegaWest Energy Corp is drilling deep into Missouri farmland.”

As Reuters explains: “As giant oil and gas conglomerates focus on key resource sites in Alaska, off shore and abroad, a new breed of speculator is emerging to dig deep into hard-to-mine areas abandoned when energy prices sank in the late 1980s. New technology has made many formerly abandoned U.S. oil fields easier to access, and recent high prices have made using that high-cost technology profitable”.

Although the amount of oil derived from some of these start-up sites is negligible at a few hundred barrels a day or less, such “prospecting by a range of independent operators represents new-found investment opportunity along with the hope of at least some small measure of relief from dependence on foreign oil.

“It is a very significant trend,” said Kishore Mohanty, director of the Institute for Improved Oil Recovery at the University of Houston. “It is all about the money. These high oil prices certainly make it feasible for people to go after it.”

Its all about the money….


  • Hello,
    I have a property here in ohio that has an old shack in one of the pastures and in that shack is what appears to be and old oil well at times it bubbles up and overflows outside of the pit and even the shack itself to a small degree.
    I enquired and found out that at one time even natural gas was piped into the the old home here that I bought with the property from this old well and you can see a continual bubbling out through the crude laying in this pit.
    Could this be natural gas as well, along with the crude oil I see?
    My other question is, I saw a news article about a gentleman in Indiana that was approched by an oil company to drill in his backyard and he allowed it and now are getting 3 barrels a day from that well.
    And they said even at that rate it is economically viable.
    Can you direct me to someone, anyone, phone numbers and or addresses that might be able to help me evaluate this well to see if it is a viable canidate for commercial production?

    Your help in this matter is appreciated, thank you,
    James Jernigan

  • James,

    You can contact any local small energy company and have them come take a look at the site. You should do some research at your local courthouse to verify mineral ownership as well. If you do not own the minerals there is no benefit to them being produced. Contact me if you have any questions.

  • Hello,

    My husband and I own a farm in Ohio as well. We know that the old home on this place also had natural gas piped into it. There were lanterns fixed to the walls with pipeline attached. The house, unfortunately, was a victim of arson shortly after we bought the farm and we never gave much thought about the possiblity of natural gas being found. So, we continued with the clean up of the land and have built a house close to where the old one sat. We have been kicking ourselves now for not investigating the pipelines that were in the old house and covering everything up.

    My question for anyone…How do we go about finding this natural gas now without digging the entire place up?

    Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

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