The Trump administration’s proposal to
open up almost all of U.S. offshore waters to oil and gas drilling could unlock
up to 65 billion barrels of oil equivalent (boe), attracting billions of
dollars in investment, consultancy Rystad Energy said.
purely at areas that are potentially going to come out of restriction, we are
talking about something closer to 65 billion boe,” Sonia Passos, senior analyst
at Rystad, a major independent consultancy tracking the sector, said in a note
That figure excludes resource potential
from western and central areas of the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, but includes the
eastern region, she said.
However, the drilling proposal has since
faced resistance from various quarters. On Tuesday, President Donald Trump’s
administration said it would not allow drilling off the coast of Florida after
urging from the state’s governor.
“The resource potential in the basins in
the direct proximity to Florida, together may hold about 1 billion boe to 1.5
billion boe, so excluding those will not change the overall picture
dramatically,” Passos said on Wednesday.
The consultancy said if operators
utilize the full potential of the newly unlocked offshore regions, exploration
activity could reach a new peak after 2030, with some 200 exploration wells
drilled per year on average.
That would imply annual investment
levels of about $15 billion, Rystad said.