GAO: Recoverable Oil in Colorado, Utah, Wyoming ‘About Equal to Entire World’s Proven Oil Reserves’

Commentary by Jim Campbell, Citizen Journalist

This news has been suspected for some time. Coming from the GAO at this time will not be good news for the Obama Administration.  Be clear Oil and Obama don’t mix.  He has never shown any desire to direct America toward a brighter future.  Think about it, this could drive the world-wide price of oil down to $5,00 a gallon, crushing the countries that hold the U.S. hostage. 

But no we won’t

Could Obama care?  Of course not, he look out for his Muslim brothers, while following his Marxist Agenda and communist ways.  He will be rejected in November, please circulate with friends.  Remember that is the entire reason for his phony claims about Social Justice.

That’s my story and I’m sticking to it, I’m J.C. and I approve this message.

( – The Green River Formation, a largely vacant area of mostly federal land that covers the territory where Colorado, Utah and Wyoming come together, contains about as much recoverable oil as all the rest the world’s proven reserves combined, an auditor from the Government Accountability Office told Congress on Thursday.

The GAO testimony stressed that the federal government was in “a unique position to influence the development of oil shale” because the Green River deposits were mostly beneath federal land.


Rock Springs, Wyo. (BLM Photo)

It also noted that developing the oil would pose “socioeconomic challenges,” which included bringing “a sizable influx of workers who along with their families put additional stress on local infrastructure” and “making planning for growth difficult for local governments.”

“The Green River Formation–an assemblage of over 1,000 feet of sedimentary rocks that lie beneath parts of Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming–contains the world’s largest deposits of oil shale,”Anu K. Mittal, the GAO’s director of natural resources and environment said in written testimony submitted to the House Science Subcommittee on Energy and Environment.

“USGS estimates that the Green River Formation contains about 3 trillion barrels of oil, and about half of this may be recoverable, depending on available technology and economic conditions,” Mittal testified.

“The Rand Corporation, a nonprofit research organization, estimates that 30 to 60 percent of the oil shale in the Green River Formation can be recovered,” Mittal told the subcommittee. “At the midpoint of this estimate, almost half of the 3 trillion barrels of oil would be recoverable. This is an amount about equal to the entire world’s proven oil reserves.”

In her oral statement before the subcommittee, Mittal said that developing the shale oil would create wealth and jobs for the country, but also challenges for government.

“Being able to tap this vast amount of oil locked within this formation will go a long way to help to meet our future demands for oil. The U.S. Geological Survey, as you noted, estimates that the formation contains about 3 trillion barrels of oil of which half may be recoverable,” she said.

“As you can imagine having the technology to develop this vast energy resource will lead to a number of important socioeconomic benefits including the creation of jobs, increases in wealth and increases in tax and royalty payments for federal and state governments,” she said.

“While large-scale oil-shale development offers socioeconomic opportunities it also poses certain socioeconomic challenges that also should not be overlooked,” she testified. “Oil shale development like other extractive industries can bring a sizable influx of workers who along with their families put additional stressed on local infrastructure. Development from expansion of extractive industries has historically followed a boom-and-bust cycle making planning for growth difficult for local governments.”

In her written testimony, Mittal noted that three-fourths of the Green River shale oil is under federal land.

“The federal government is in a unique position to influence the development of oil shale because nearly three-quarters of the oil shale within the Green River Formation lies beneath federal lands managed by the Department of the Interior’s (Interior) Bureau of Land Management (BLM),” she testified.

The GAO also cited potential environmental impacts from producing oil from the Green River shale that included the need to draw large amounts of water, possible harm to water quality, and temporary degradation of air quality and the clearing of large amounts of vegetation.

“Developing oil shale and providing power for oil shale operations and other activities will require large amounts of water and could have significant impacts on the quality and quantity of surface and groundwater resources,” Mittal said in her written testimony. “In addition, construction and mining activities during development can temporarily degrade air quality in local areas. There can also be long-term regional increases in air pollutants from oil shale processing and the generation of additional electricity to power oil shale development operations. Oil shale operations will also require the clearing of large surface areas of topsoil and vegetation which can affect wildlife habitat, and the withdrawal of large quantities of surface water which could also negatively impact aquatic life.”

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5 thoughts on “GAO: Recoverable Oil in Colorado, Utah, Wyoming ‘About Equal to Entire World’s Proven Oil Reserves’

  1. Many years ago I worked for a dredging company digging locations for floating drill rigs,There are literally thousands of capped oil wells in the gulf.
    Why is this vast resource capped off ?, better ask Chevron and Shell.

  2. Newt Gingrich’s plan should be used by Mitt Romney.

  3. Isn’t this just a ploy to force US citizens to go GREEN. It has been proven that Green does not work and is very very expensive. This year EU will have to pay for green and pay to subsidize the normal that does work. So all in all triple costs. Many will die either heat or cold will kill them. So perhaps this is round about way to population control. Either way it does not work, we have the resources and we should use them. At this point I want a Supreme court judge to demand he stop this socialism communist crap.

  4. What about the 1930-40’s wells that were capped? Many of those site were using old technologies with limited drill depth capabilities. Just how many could be re-opened?…and are the new refineries that are under construction, are they capable of the new refining methods? (they weren’t needed, contrary to the Oil Moguls claims. I was at the Exxon Baton Rouge refinery back in ’06… 40% of that facility has never even been on-line!)

  5. The stats do not account for the pool of replenishable 27.2 trillion bls. of oil in the shape of a hook, which runs N/S through Israel. The pressure and replenishment is so great, the overflow has brought world renown wealth and development to the Arabs. The issue will be that when Israel drills on it’s own soil in the north plains of Megiddo….the Arabs will claim reversed geological conditions. Well, we all know what happens at Megiddo, over oil AGAIN !

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