[Editor's note: A version of this story appears in the September 2021 issue of Oil and Gas Investor magazine.]

In this issue, 40 years after Oil and Gas Investor debuted, we’ve asked the question: What do the next 40 years look like? What should they look like?

No one can really predict this, especially when one factors in the increasingly common and frenzied anti-fossil fuel sentiments and net-zero pledges of governments, industries and big banks. But we are optimistic. We have to believe amazing technical breakthroughs are no doubt coming in the next 40 years, of which we have no clue at the moment.

Change is inevitable, but it rarely takes on the form we think it will, or fear it will. Surprises can be exciting or dreadful. No one could have dreamed back in 1981 that such a thing as the iPhone would exist, nor become so widely used around the world. Similarly, no one could have dreamed in 1981 that a shale revolution was possible, brewing in North Texas right under our noses while the rest of the industry drilled hundreds of conventional vertical wells everywhere.

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