Crude oil

Global oil markets enter "very crucial period"

Venezuela protestors form SOS with their bodies
Health workers gather to form a human chain reading 'SOS' during a protest in Venezuela. Photo: Federico Parra/AFP via Getty Images

The International Energy Agency said Thursday that the global crude market is entering a "very crucial period" as U.S. sanctions against Iran loom and the country's exports have already dropped. Oh, and Venezuela is still collapsing.

The big picture: There's certainly enough crude from elsewhere sloshing around right now.

Study finds surging water volumes needed for fracking boom

A fracking site in Texas. Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

The amount of water needed for new oil and gas wells developed via fracking has surged in recent years — and it's slated to keep rising — Duke University researchers conclude in a new paper.

Why it matters: It underscores resource challenges, especially in arid regions like West Texas that accompany the decade-old boom in fracking and horizontal drilling, which has pushed U.S. oil and gas production to record levels.