US oil production hits 28-year high

Crude oil production in the United States hit a 28-year high last week due largely to the energy boom caused by shale exploration, Bloomberg News reported.

Producers made 8.428 million barrels a day in the week that ended May 10, a 78,000-barrel-a-day increase from the prior week, Bloomberg said, citing Energy Information Administration figures. It was the highest output volume since October 1986.

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Bloomberg attributed the record to the combination of shale horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, which has unlocked vast supplies of both oil and natural gas.

The shale boom is moving the U.S. closer and closer to energy independence. The U.S. produced 87 percent of the energy it consumed in 2013 and 90 percent in December, a 28-year record.

The EIA has forecast that the U.S. will produce an average 9.24 million barrels a day of crude in 2015, which would be the highest since 1972. That compares with 7.45 billion barrels a day in 2013 and 8.46 billion in 2014.

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