How Oil Made North Dakota Rich, in One Map

An oil drilling rig is seen September 29, 2010 near Stanley, North Dakota. The well is being drilled into the Bakken Formation, one of the largest contiguous deposits of oil and natural gas in the United States. It is an interbedded sequence of black shale, siltstone and sandstone that underlies large areas of northwestern North Dakota, northeastern Montana, southern Saskatchewan and southwestern Manitoba.
National Journal
Amy Harder
Dec. 12, 2013, 10:37 a.m.

North Dakota was the great ex­cep­tion to the Great Re­ces­sion.

The only area in the coun­try that saw both a wide­spread sig­ni­fic­ant in­crease in house­hold in­comes and a sig­ni­fic­ant de­crease in poverty rates over the past five years was North Dakota, spe­cific­ally West­ern North Dakota, ac­cord­ing to 2012 data the U.S. Census Bur­eau re­leased and mapped out on Thursday.

Me­di­an house­hold in­comes in more than half the counties in the state, in­clud­ing most on the west­ern side, where oil pro­duc­tion is boom­ing, are high­er today than be­fore the re­ces­sion began in 2007, and they’re also high­er in ob­ject­ive mon­et­ary terms than most of the rest of the coun­try. House­hold in­comes are also up in South Dakota. West­ern North Dakota’s oil patch is one of the few places that not only weathered the Great Re­ces­sion, but thrived. See the full ver­sion of this map.

Over the past five years, since 2007, 62 per­cent of all counties in North Dakota saw in­creases in their me­di­an house­hold in­comes, and 33 per­cent in South Dakota saw in­creases.

“One could say that these two states rep­res­en­ted nearly 50 per­cent of all counties which showed a stat­ist­ic­ally sig­ni­fic­ant in­crease in me­di­an house­hold in­come,” the bur­eau finds.

By con­trast, of the oth­er 3,000-plus counties na­tion­wide, just 56 had a sim­il­ar “stat­ist­ic­ally sig­ni­fic­ant in­crease” in house­hold in­comes. Of all the counties that had a sig­ni­fic­ant change in in­come levels, 89 per­cent saw de­clines.

West­ern North Dakota is one of the few areas out­side of the North­east and Mid-At­lantic re­gions that has counties with house­hold in­comes above the na­tion­al av­er­age, which was $51,371 in 2012. West­ern North Dakota was also one of the few areas where the poverty rate de­creased over the past five years, to be well be­low the na­tion­al av­er­age of 15.9 per­cent.

The Census Bur­eau doesn’t say what is caus­ing North Dakota to stand out as it clearly does in its maps. But the oil boom that’s taken over the west­ern part of the state — and is hav­ing ripple ef­fects throughout the re­gion and the rest of the U.S. — is in­dis­put­ably a huge eco­nom­ic driver.

The state pro­duced al­most a mil­lion bar­rels a day of pet­ro­leum in Septem­ber, its Min­er­al Re­sources De­part­ment re­por­ted in Novem­ber. That’s up from about 100,000 bar­rels a day in Janu­ary 2005. North Dakota has gone from be­ing the ninth-largest pro­du­cer of oil nine years ago to second be­hind only Texas today.

What We're Following See More »
DONATING TO FOOD BANKS
Government Buying $20 Million in Cheese
1 hours ago
WHY WE CARE

Thanks to competition from Europe, America's cheese stockpiles are at a 30-year high. Enter the U.S. government, which announced it's buying 11 million pounds of the stuff (about $20 million). The cheese will be donated to food banks.

Source:
BRIEFER THAN TRUMP’S?
Clinton to Receive Classified Briefing on Saturday
3 hours ago
THE DETAILS
FHFA RULES APPLY
Judge: Freddie Mac Doesn’t Have to Open Its Books
5 hours ago
THE DETAILS

"Freddie Mac shareholders cannot force the mortgage finance company to allow them to inspect its records, a federal court ruled Tuesday." A shareholder had asked the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia to allow him to inspect its books and records, as Virginia law allows him to do. "The court held that Freddie shareholders no longer possess a right to inspect the company’s records because those rights had been transferred to the Federal Housing Finance Agency when the company entered into conservatorship in 2008."

Source:
MANY BEING TRADED ON BLACK MARKET
Pentagon Can’t Account for 750k Guns Provided to Iraq, Afghanistan
5 hours ago
THE DETAILS

The Pentagon has "provided more than 1.45 million firearms to various security forces in Afghanistan and Iraq, including more than 978,000 assault rifles, 266,000 pistols and almost 112,000 machine guns." Trouble is, it can only account for about 700,000 of those guns. The rest are part of a vast arms trading network in the Middle East. "Taken together, the weapons were part of a vast and sometimes minimally supervised flow of arms from a superpower to armies and militias often compromised by poor training, desertion, corruption and patterns of human rights abuses."

Source:
SINCE JANUARY
Baltimore Is Spying on Its Residents from the Air
8 hours ago
WHY WE CARE

"Since the beginning of the year, the Baltimore Police Department" has been using a Cessna airplane armed with sophisticated camera equipment "to investigate all sorts of crimes, from property thefts to shootings." The public hasn't been notified about the system, funded by a private citizen.

Source:
×