Kirsten Polyansky | Haynes and Boone, LLP
THE BOOM: It is difficult, if not impossible, to survey the current energy landscape in the United States without seeing the phrase “shale boom”—for good or for bad—somewhere in the rhetoric. In the past 10 years, technological advances in fracking and horizontal drilling have drastically changed domestic production and overhauled the possibilities for the future. The U.S. shale boom is attributed with not only record U.S. gasoline exports and record increases in domestic crude production, but also lower gas prices for U.S. consumers, increased jobs for American workers, reductions in carbon emissions and even a possible boost to Black Friday spending in 2014. And in the realm of U.S. policy, the shale boom has provided a market response to concerns of foreign oil dependence that many would say is unrivaled by any formal government response. For these reasons, some say the “shale boom” is actually a “shale revolution” if we consider that shale advances have created a fundamental shift in the North American energy landscape in a relatively short period of time.