U.S. shale production is in deep, deep trouble as the fracking boom bursts in the face of low oil prices. The September report from the oil cartel, OPEC, shows the writing on the wall.

"Crude oil prices have declined more than 50 percent since last year," says Nova Safo of NPR's Marketplace. "Fracking companies in places like North Dakota, West Texas, parts of Oklahoma and Kansas have all taken a big hit. Many are filing for bankruptcy protection or going out of business."

"There were a large number of new entrants into the fracking business during the last four to five years," industry analyst James West of Evercore told NPR. "These are very small ... they were building out their fleet. And now they're finding there's no work out there, and so they're having to close their doors."

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