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Economy

Low Gas Prices Affect Kansas Oil Producers

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Edmiston Oil Company
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Gas prices are lower than they have been for years. On Jan.7th, you can pay $1.70 a gallon at several Wichita stations. There is hope that low prices will be a boom to the economy, but as KMUW's Aileen LeBlanc reports, the oil industry in Kansas is treading water.

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Edmiston Oil Company President Jon Callen

"Kansas operators are price takers, not price makers," Jon Callen, Edmiston Oil Company President, says. "We just have to accept whatever the world price is going to be. If we lost total Kansas (oil) production, the world would never even notice it."

How does that compare globally?

"The world produces about 89 million barrels-a-day," Callen says. "Kansas production is important to the state economy, it's one of the three most important industries in the state. On the global scale, if it all fell apart, nobody would even notice it.  It would be bad for Kansas oil producers."

But low oil prices are good for the rest of the economy. It's leaving money in people's pockets when they're filling up their car. And once they get used to that and accustomed to the fact that 'Gosh, I've got an extra hundred dollars at the end of the month because I've saved so much every time I've filled up,' they'll eventually start spending it on things."

Jon Callen is also Chairman of the Board of Kansas Strong.

Visit the Kansas Geological Survey for more stats on Kansas oil production. 

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