The Bakken Goes Full Circle

By The Bakken Magazine Staff | October 04, 2013

Since the rapid development of the Bakken oil and gas play in North Dakota began around 2007, the state’s real GDP per capita (gross domestic product divided by midyear population) has been steadily rising. Last year, the state’s real GDP per capita was $55,250, which was 29 percent above the national average. Last year also marked the second year in a row the state led the country in real GDP per capita, much of which can be credited to oil and gas development. As oil and gas resources are retrieved, the growth of several other industries also shows significant rise. The state’s mining industry has increased by 42 percent in the past year, according to the U.S. Energy Information Agency.
Because transportation is a major part of the mining industry, the transportation industry linked to mining has grown as well. Roughly 75 percent of what is produced at the mining sites is hauled by truck, according to the EIA. What is trucked also has to be stored before use. Between 2007 and 2012 the transportation and warehousing industries grew by 16 percent annually, with a 35 percent increase in 2012 alone, the EIA reports.

The mining industry’s growth has led to increased demand for electricity by the industrial sector as well. The growth in electricity has made it possible to construct more oil and gas processing and handling infrastructure in the state. And, as more oil and gas infrastructure comes online, more oil and gas can be moved. With more takeaway capacity, more power, a larger supply of frack sand from the state’s mining sites and a larger fleet of trucks and warehouse storage, the cycle for oil production appears to be constant.