Kansas oil industry booming as price stays high

GREAT BEND, Kan. — The pumps that bob across the Kansas prairie mimic the way things used to be at the edges of oil country: Up … down … up … down. Not anymore. The past four years have been up … way up … up … way up.

Some Kansans a decade ago left for dead the business of Little Oil — pinching a few barrels a day from a well on old Ed’s farm. Back when market prices fell below $10 a barrel, petroleum companies shut down many of those pumps. Then, as world oil prices climbed, the price for Kansas crude climbed.

Barrel here, barrel there, and now approaching $100 for each — old Ed is looking at some real money.

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