Nearly every piece of clothing we wear is either made from or processed with oil, CSU geosciences professor Sven Egenhoff said.
Last weekâ€™s discovery of crude oil at the Niobrara Formation in Weld County probably wonâ€™t put Colorado at the forefront of the oil industry, Egenhoff said. But, because of oilâ€™s prominence in society, the newfound source will likely cushion the stateâ€™s economy and create jobs.
â€œThis is one of the biggest discoveries in the U.S. in the last 10 years,â€ Weld County Commissioner Doug Rademacher said.
The one well, located just south of the Wyoming border, surpassed normal new-well production by 1,000 barrels of oil in just one day, according to the Greeley Tribune.
EOG Resources, formerly Enron Oil and Gas, made the discovery early last week and Rademacher said during that first drill the site produced three times more oil than a typical well.
Horizontal drilling, a technique that allows drillers to tap more than a half-mile of land at a time, was used in this discovery of â€œsweet crude oil,â€ Rademacher said. This type of oil is scarce and contains little other natural gas.
The area ÂÂâ€“â€“ stretching from Fort Collins to Sterling â€“â€“ is now open for leasing.
â€œItâ€™s fast and furious with leases up there,â€ Rademacher said.
Oil, Egenhoff said, forms from the breakdown of organic matter and tiny organisms after the earth has naturally heated it to between 143 to 212 degrees Fahrenheit, which he calls the â€œoil window.â€
Drillers then harvest the oil by â€œfracking,â€ or stimulating the rock until it breaks. This, Egenhoff said, is to increase the flow of fluid.
â€œOil is not sitting in huge lakes down there,â€ Egenhoff said.
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