Matthew Garrington's recent letter "Public land use," Readers' Forum, Jan. 16) on the use of public lands was slamming Utah's booming energy industry. Sorry to say he was correct in stating the number of oil and gas wells in Utah has reached an all time high of 10,000.

What he didn't tell the reader is that the oil and gas industry is having a difficult time finding oil fields with a high level of productivity. Fifteen years ago, 60 percent of the oil wells in Utah had a moderate output of 15 to 1,600 barrels per day. Last year the output of those record 10,000 wells had slid with only 28 percent having a moderate output and the number of wells producing less than 15 barrels per day is now 72 percent.

Think about it, 7,200 oil and gas wells in Utah have only a mere trickle of oil and gas. Utah now produces only as much oil as it did in 1991 and about half of the amount we did in 1986. So, the oil and gas industry may have all the access to public lands it needs, but do we have the quantity of fuel for our homes and vehicles we need?

Jerold Carpenter