The U.S Geological Survey says the 25-county region holds an average volume of about 53 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, according to its updated assessment released Thursday. That’s nearly twice as much gas as the agency estimated in 2003, before a mad dash of drillers transformed the landscape in North Texas.
The region's shale also holds about 172 million barrels of shale oil and 176 million barrels of natural gas liquids, the new estimate says.
"It's a testament to American ingenuity that we are still finding massive new supplies of natural gas, especially here in the place where the fracking boom began,” Steve Everley, a spokesman for the industry-funded group North Texans for Natural Gas, said in an email. "This new assessment is certainly good news for our energy security."