New Mexico is the nation’s sixth-largest oil producer. The industry is creating thousands of jobs in the southeast corner of the state. But all that activity is straining basic services. Housing is limited, classrooms are crowded and roads are more dangerous. Now cities are struggling to catch up.
Drillers across the country are eager to profit from high oil prices. That’s creating a lot of activity in once-quiet towns. In the Southwest, companies are flocking to the Permian Basin, one of the richest oil reserves in the nation. In one New Mexico hotspot, the oil industry is transforming local economies.