Special Report

The 10 Most Oil-Rich States

7. Wyoming
> Proved oil reserves: 706 million barrels
> Natural gas reserves: N/A
> Energy consumption per capita: 302.9 million BTUs (23rd highest)
> Number of operating refineries: 6 (4th most)

Wyoming increased its crude oil production by more than 9% to roughly 63 million barrels in 2013, potentially driven by an increase in proved oil reserves. Wyoming’s booming energy sector helped drive growth in other parts of the economy as well, such as the trucking industry, which hauls rigs, drills, water, sand and crude oil around the state. The full impact of the energy boom is probably nowhere better shown than in the state’s growth rate. In 2013, Wyoming’s GDP rose by 7.6%, of which 6.1 percentage points were attributed solely to mining — which includes the production of natural resources. Oil is not the only booming energy sector in Wyoming. The state accounts for 15% of the nation’s total coal reserves as of 2012, and roughly 40% of total coal production.

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6. Oklahoma
> Proved oil reserves: 934 million barrels
> Natural gas reserves: 28.7 trillion cubic feet (3rd most)
> Energy consumption per capita: 319.1 million BTUs (22nd highest)
> Number of operating refineries: 5 (6th most)

Both Oklahoma’s oil and natural gas reserves grew in recent years. Nearly 500 million barrels of reserves were found at existing site in 2011 and 2012, expanding total proven reserves to 934 million barrels. In addition to added reserves, crude oil production increased by 25% between 2012 and 2013, one of the largest increases in the nation. Oklahoma is rich also in natural gas, with 28.7 billion cubic feet in proven reserves as of 2012 — third most in the nation. Together with Pennsylvania and Texas, the three states accounted for nearly half of the nation’s total natural gas reserves as of 2012.

5. New Mexico
> Proved oil reserves: 965 million barrels
> Natural gas reserves: 14.6 trillion cubic feet (7th most)
> Energy consumption per capita: 256.2 million BTUs (15th lowest)
> Number of operating refineries: 2 (tied, 17th most)

New Mexico has benefited from new extraction technologies. Despite wells running dry in the early 2000s in the Permian Basin, which occupies 300 miles in New Mexico and Texas, fracking and other extraction methods allowed access to previously inaccessible oil reserves in 2010. Quickly, crude oil production in New Mexico grew to historical levels, increasing by more than 50% from 2010 to 2012. A new oil field and 170 extensions in 2012 also buoyed oil production. New Mexico also has the seventh largest natural gas proven reserves and the 10th largest coal reserves in the country.