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North Dakota's oil boomtowns are facing an uncertain future — here's what it's like to live there

Business Insider Logo By Mark Abadi of Business Insider | Slide 1 of 22: North Dakota towns exploded in size as part of the state's oil boom.But the end of the boom spelled economic disaster for many of the new residents in towns such as Williston and Watford City.Now, the towns are facing an uncertain future. The  discovery of oil in northwestern North Dakota turned several small towns into unexpected boomtowns from 2006 to 2014. In places like Williston and Watford City, town populations more than doubled as lucrative jobs in the oil industry attracted workers from all over the world.  By 2016, the price of oil plummeted from more than $100 a barrel to $30, sending the same towns into an economic tailspin. Now, with fewer jobs to go around and local schools and police departments straining, its residents are facing an uncertain future. Here's what it's like to live in North Dakota's oil boomtowns.

North Dakota's oil boomtowns are facing an uncertain future — here's what it's like to live there

  • The discovery of oil in northwestern North Dakota turned several small towns into unexpected boomtowns from 2006 to 2014.

    In places like Williston and Watford City, town populations more than doubled as lucrative jobs in the oil industry attracted workers from all over the world.

    By 2016, the price of oil plummeted from more than $100 a barrel to $30, sending the same towns into an economic tailspin. Now, with fewer jobs to go around and local schools and police departments straining, its residents are facing an uncertain future.

    Click through to see what it's like to live in North Dakota's oil boomtowns.

    © Andrew Burton/Getty Images
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