Export sales could boost Bakken oil production
SIDNEY, Mont.--Bakken oil production will be around for years, but some political strings are going to have to be pulled to drive up sweet crude prices before things pick up, according an industry analyst.
SIDNEY, Mont.-Bakken oil production will be around for years, but some political strings are going to have to be pulled to drive up sweet crude prices before things pick up, according an industry analyst.
Rayola Dougher, of the American Petroleum Institute, met with Montana farmers in Sidney in the far northeast corner of the state this week to talk oil and agriculture. Oil, natural gas and the fertilizer that comes from refining play major roles in farm production costs. In Bakken country, oil and farm interests are folded together.
Dougher said it's possible to have the higher crude prices the Bakken oil economy needs and still keep fuel affordable for farmers.
API is lobbying Congress to waive the export ban on American oil. Refineries outside the United States and dependent on sweet crude would be willing to pay more for Bakken oil if they could get it, Dougher said, because their refining costs would go down.
Adding more Bakken oil to the global mix would at the same time lower the average price for oil, including heavy crude, which is what most refineries in the United States are designed to refine.
Dougher said the members of the Montana Farm Bureau that met with her this week were the right audience to understand the importance of exports, given how much Montana's grain economy relies on overseas sales.