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Abstract

This paper presents a current assessment of U.S. tar sand resources, based on an independent appraisal of all tar sand deposits with 100 million or more barrels of oil in place and a review of published data for minor tar deposits having 10-100 million barrels of oil in place.

The U.S. tar sand resource is estimated to be 63 billion barrels distributed in 11 states. Of this, 22 billion barrels are classified as a measured resource and the remainder, 41 billion barrels, are classified as speculative. This resource estimate is considerably larger than those reported in previous studies, which ranged from 5.5 to 36.4 billion barrels. The distribution of the U.S. tar sand resource by state is shown on Figure 1.

In addition, the paper discusses over 1100 heavy-oil deposits, an important but only partly developed energy resource.

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