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According to the latest statistics published by the Energy Information Administration (EIA), the United States produced 10 percent of the world's crude oil in the final quarter of 2013, up from 9 percent in the same period a year earlier.
The nation's average daily output of tight oil between October and December last year stood at 3.22 million barrels per day, the report also revealed. These figures look even more impressive when put in perspective: there are only two other commercial producers of tight oil in the world -- Canada and Russia -- and their average daily output stood at 300,000 barrels per day and 100,000 barrels per day in the same period, respectively.
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Fueled by increasing oil production operations across the country, the U.S. oil industry continues to go from strength to strength. In total, U.S. oil production averaged 7.84 million barrels a day in the fourth quarter.
The 3.22 million barrels per day produced from shale and other dense rock formations over the period are mostly attributed to hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling operations, which helped oil companies unlock these previously unreachable reserves. Thanks to such technologies, U.S. oil production is rising at a rate unseen since the 1980s and tight oil is gradually replacing conventional fuels. According to the EIA, close to two-thirds of U.S. tight oil was produced from wells in South Texas' Eagle Ford and North Dakota's Bakken Shale.