Our plan

Dragon Shale has brought together an exceptional group of engineers, scientists, financial and management personnel with the end goal of implementing oil shale projects.

Our studies indicate that by producing both high value products and fuels oil shale will become an important, secure, cost effective and reliable source of both products and energy in the near and intermediate term. Oil shale projects have previously overlooked high value derivative products unique to retorted Kerogen. There are two key aspects to our strategy; deploy and further develop appropriate technologies and identify and develop suitable resources.

First Joint Venture

Dragon Shale, LLC is a technology development and project management company with specialized expertise in the oil shale industry.

Dragon Shale will use this expertise to select the proper technology, business models, product mixes and organization structures to launch commercially successful oil shale projects. In this way Dragon Shale will avoid the many pitfalls that been encountered by others in this challenging field.

The first such project we have selected is on land privately owned by CUOS in eastern Utah. Our intention is to design, build and operate a plant with an expected lifetime of twenty years. Our estimations are that over this lifespan we can obtain approximately fifty two million barrels (52M bbl) of high value product with total revenue of $3.3B. This will equate to an internal rate of return of 20%.


We plan to deploy the best available technology that meets the basic needs of all stakeholders for individual projects.

Based on Dragon Shale’s research and understanding of the chemistry of oil shales much is needed in the area of technology development if it is to become a significant and responsible optional source of high value products and fuels. Hence Dragon Shale is developing its own technology to enhance yields, improve oil quality, reduce carbon foot print and mitigate financial and environmental risks.  Specifically Dragon Shale is developing technology which is designed to enhance hydrogen transfer into the synthetic crude oils produced by leading current conventional retorting technologies. Preliminary work indicates that these performance enhancements may be applicable to some of the existing technologies available to the industry.

The issues facing the oil shale industry are not just the nuts and bolts of mining, extraction, upgrading, etc. These many issues interact in complex ways to drive many different cost/benefit evaluations. Dragon Shale has learned through studies of failed projects that a key to success is implementing “right size” projects. Usually smaller than historically attempted that allow tuning to the unique characteristics of specific oil shale resource and local logistical, environmental and market conditions. Further Dragon Shale has concluded from studies of failed projects that setting big oil expectations for exploiting resources from federal, state and private lands has often left resource caretakers and other stakeholders out of the loop in contributing to project success, often resulting in antagonistic relationships. Dragon Shale believes it is critical to technology implementation to engage all stakeholders in the technology selection and application process and to contribute to the decision making process which will always involve commercial and environmental considerations.

Working with the client Dragon Shale evaluates the commercially demonstrated technologies in order to select one most suited to the specific qualities of the client resource. The aim being to implement a solution to achieve the best technical, commercial and environmental match between the extraction and conversion process and the resource. Dragon Shale then further applies its own process technology through the development of the project plans to design, construct commission and operate projects exceeding the best otherwise existing technology and resource combination.

Further experimentation and development is also being conducted which is expected to deliver a new process design. This technology when made available to Dragon Shale clients will be retrofitted to their existing operating infrastructure. Providing significantly higher total yields and product qualities while further reducing the total operating cost and environmental footprint. Thus delivering to Dragon Shale clients an industry leading commercial and environmental advantage.


Certain logistical advantages have made the property owned by The Colorado Utah Oil Shale Company Inc. (CUOS) an ideal place to implement existing, well tested technologies on a relatively small scale.

Dragon Shale LLC and CUOS have forged a strategic partnership to deploy the best available technology for production of synthetic crude oil from the CUOS oil shale resource. Rather than simply sell a low value synthetic crude for processing by others, process adjustments to maximize the yield of high value components will be made. This project will be implemented as a joint venture with Dragon Shale and CUOS.

This first project will focus on the best available, proven technologies so as to reduce business and technical risk. The plan will not, however, be completely unresponsive to newly developed and proven technologies. The project will likely span twenty years, during which time Dragon Shale will continue to develop its own technologies and partner with others to improve oil shale technology.

The Colorado-Utah Oil Shale Company (CUOS)

A privately owned holder of some of the richest, most easily extracted oil shale deposits in Utah.

Near the end World War I and before major deposits of conventional oil reserves were discovered around the world, oil shale was a topic of intense interest. Many companies in the US were formed to acquire oil shale properties with the hope that someday soon oil shale would become a major new source of energy.

The Colorado-Utah Oil Shale Company, incorporated January 19, 1918, was formed in that wave of western oil shale companies on the belief that oil shale property would soon be in demand and valuable by a group of railroaders and gamblers in a saloon in Pueblo, Colorado. The original holdings of the company included two mining claims, one in Utah and one in Colorado, hence the name Colorado-Utah. The claims were purchased for $38,000 or $10.33 an acre.

None of the founders of The Colorado-Utah Oil Shale Company ever realized any gains from their investments. Company stock was passed to generations of descendants. In 2001 the one person – who had managed to sustain the company and fill its treasury from grazing and a gas well – died at the age of 90. Beginning in 2010 there was a resurrection of the company with a new board of directors and officers, and interested, enlivened shareholders. Today, the Colorado-Utah Oil Shale is a fully functional company with engaged shareholders and with professionals and business people as its corporate officers and members of its board of directors and pleased to join with Dragon Shale, LLC as a partner in the development and smart-commercialization of our oil shale.

A commitment to best available, proven technology will allow Dragon Shale, mineral owners, the State of Utah and the general public to share in the benefits of newly demonstrated technology subsequently made available for future projects with other clients. Similarly, future clients will share in the benefits of knowledge gained from their respective projects. CUOS shares in Dragon Shales approach to implementing a project which is focused on the responsible development of their resource and not on the maximum short term achievable profitability for either CUOS or Dragon Shale. Dragon Shale believes that it is this close cooperation between the parties that is an overall key to project success.