Energy: Dry Holes and Discoveries

Some suggestions of success on both sides of the Atlantic

Some of the riskiest gambling anywhere is not in Atlantic City, N.J., but in a rough region 75 miles or more to the east. There, 39 companies have anted up $1.1 billion for leases to drill for oil and gas deep under the sea. While there is nearly a fifty-fifty chance of winning at blackjack, the odds of striking black gold offshore are 1 in 10—and there have been a lot of losers. Last month Continental Oil Co., having drilled a 12,000-ft. dry hole in...

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