1. Diversified energy company ONEOK (NYSE: OKE
, currently trading at an all-time high of $45.21 per share, and 26% above a year ago) announced $1 billion of new investments
in energy projects, including a fourth (and unplanned) 100 million cubic feet natural gas processing facility in the Bakken. This is huge.
2. Bentek Energy predicts a natural gas boom for the Bakken. Remember, the Bakken field is an oil field; the natural gas is a by-product in the Bakken.
3. Natural gas was estimated to add 3 - 5 percent of economic value to the Bakken; original estimates were that $3 to $4 billion will be required to develop the natural gas in Bakken; that estimate has now been moved up to $15 billion based on the Bentek Energy study suggesting a natural gas boom is pending in the Bakken.
4. There are now reports that North Dakota is producing up to 800,000 bbls. of oil per day. I think that's a stretch; most recent official figures are 639,000 bbls., but huge increases are projected for this summer due to additional well completion crews being sent to Williams County, where activity has shifted. (McKenzie County activity also growing.)
5. Occidental (a $72 billion market cap company) reported that it increased worldwide oil production in Q2 of 2012, and much of the increase was due to the Bakken.
6. Whiting, a Bakken-centric oil company, had a stellar second quarter, especially in light of how the majors (XOM, CVX, and COP) did.
7. The Bentek Energy study suggests oil production in the Bakken could go from current 639,000 bopd, to a peak of 2 million bopd by 2025, the highest estimate yet.
8. The Bakken has moved from exploratory to development stage. More and more leases are held by production and urgency to drill will lessen.
9. There is a flurry of activity at state level to issue permits for the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation, in the Heart Butte oil field. Native Americans are becoming huge beneficiaries of the Bakken boom.