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Environment & Energy Report

Oil Explorers Revert to Pre-Shale Drilling Level Across U.S. (1)

May 29, 2020, 5:58 PM

Oil explorers are drilling at the slowest pace in more than a decade as the pandemic-driven collapse in energy demand wipes out cash flow, jobs and even entire companies.

Drillers idled 15 oil rigs across the U.S. this week, bringing the tally to 222, the lowest since 2009, according to Baker Hughes Co. data released on Friday. The Permian Basin of West Texas and New Mexico accounted for the bulk of the reduction, with 14 machines turned off.

The nationwide count has tumbled 67% since early March as Covid-19 lockdowns paralyzed economies and crushed crude markets.

Oil companies have...

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