ExxonMobil Strikes Big in Gulf of Mexico

Posted by - Friday, June 10th, 2011

By Brittany Stepniak

On Wednesday, June 8, ExxonMobil revealed their discovery to the world. This was their first deepwater exploration project since the moratorium issued by President Obama in response to the BP oil spill disaster over a year ago.  

And a successful project it was. In addition to the abundance of oil found -an estimated 700 million barrels-, ExxonMobil reported that they also struck a second source of oil including a source of natural gas.  

Company excecutives are thrilled with the results of this exploration. ExxonMobil Exploration Company President Steve Greenlee said:

"This is one of the largest discoveries in the Gulf of Mexico in the last decade." 

So, just how much energy can be equated with all that oil? According to oil trader and author of "Oil's Endless Bid: Taming the Unreliable Price of Oil to Secure Our Economy" Dan Dicker, it's enough oil to power our country for about 28 days- based on an average consumption rate of 25 million barrels per day.  

On a greater scale, the world uses nearly 72 million barrels of crude oil each day. Looking at it in this light, the world could be powered off of this new oil suppy for approximately ten days.  

Dicker explains:

"It's not insignificant at all...It's not an energy solution, but it's a significant piece of our supply puzzle."

Perhaps the greatest tidbit we may extract from this news is the restored confidence in the notion that there are, in fact, still oil sources in nature that have not yet been discovered. Moreover, it may help ease public fear of deepwater drilling.  

Tom Kloza, chief oil analyst for the Oil Price Information Service, commented:


"It is great news for ExxonMobil and it underscores the notion that with proper safety, oil can be found and taken offshore from the deepwater Gulf of Mexico,"

Meanwhile, analysts predict no immediate impacts on the oil market in lieu of ExxonMobil's latest find. In contrast, the oil market is currently controlled by an OPEC deadlock on whether to supply more oil. Thus, prices rose over $100 a barrel.

Uncertainty relating to global growth outlooks is likely to keep "negative pressure" on crude oil prices, keeping trading prices within the same limited range. 

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