North Dakota might be producing more oil than OPEC member Ecuador

The Bemidji Pioneer says North Dakota was filling nearly as many barrels as the country of Ecuador was last month, and it may have already surpassed it. And experts say production will continue to ramp up -- fast.
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The Bemidji Pioneer says North Dakota was filling nearly as many barrels as the country of Ecuador was last month, and it may have already surpassed it. And experts say production will continue to ramp up -- fast.

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North Dakota could soon be nation's No. 2 oil producer

The state is on track to overtake California and Alaska in oil production. It would trail only Texas. The state now pumps out about 444,000 barrels a day.

North Dakota oil drillers set another production record

Records from the state's Department of Natural Resources show North Dakota produced 18.3 million barrels of crude in April -- up from 17.9 million barrels in March. Minnesota's western neighbor has surpassed Alaska to take the No. 2 slot among the states. Natural gas production also set a record in April.

North Dakota surpasses Alaska in oil production

Minnesota's western neighbor set another record in March to become the second-leading state in crude oil production. Texas is now the only state to produce more crude oil than North Dakota.

North Dakota overtakes California to become nation's third largest oil producer

The controversial hydraulic fracturing process, which extracts oil from shale, has boosted our neighbor's oil output to more than a half-million barrels a day. The oil rush has also helped drive down unemployment, with oil companies claiming there are more jobs than people.

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The North Dakota Department of Mineral Resources says the state pumped 173.9 million barrels through September, compared 152.9 million barrels last year, the Associated Press reports. The state agency expects to surpass 200 million barrels in 2012.