And those laws are unbreakable.
In the middle of the last decade, gas wells weren't all that productive, and the industry put an increasing number of wells in service just to find enough gas to meet our nation's needs. In fact, the natural-gas rig count, as tracked by energy firm Baker Hughes (NYSE: BHI), spiked from 966 at the end of 2003 to around 1,450 by the end of 2007.
By the middle of 2008, the price of natural gas spiked to $13 per MCF (thousand cubic feet) as supply only slowly started to catch up to demand. Yet by end of that year, gas would be back down to $5 MCF. Many thought that was due to the slow U.S. economy, but few realized that the industry was creating a nightmare scenario as newly-productive gas rigs threatened to create a glut of natural gas that simply couldn't be absorbed by demand.
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