Free Markets, Free People
The new fossil fuel reality
Myth: The US has only 2% of the world’s proven reserves.
From Canada to Colombia to Brazil, oil and gas production in the Western Hemisphere is booming, with the United States emerging less dependent on supplies from an unstable Middle East. Central to the new energy equation is the United States itself, which has ramped up production and is now churning out 1.7 million more barrels of oil and liquid fuel per day than in 2005.
“There are new players and drivers in the world,” said Ruben Etcheverry, chief executive of Gas and Oil of Neuquen, a state-owned energy firm that is positioning itself to develop oil and gas fields here in Patagonia. “There is a new geopolitical shift, and those countries that never provided oil and gas can now do so. For the United States, there is a glimmer of the possibility of self-sufficiency.”
Or, as the article from which those two paragraphs are taken is entitled, “Center of gravity in oil world shifts to America”.
And, given recent finds, there’s more than a “glimmer of the possibility of self-sufficiency for the United States” there is a real possibility for self-sufficiency if a coherent energy policy is put together that exploits the reserves we have.
Currently the US imports 45% of its petroleum needs. 29% of all imports comes from Canada, 8% from Mexico. Saudi Arabia supplies 14% Nigeria 10% and Venezuela 11%, with lesser suppliers picking up the rest.
Canada’s supplies of crude oil are going to continue to rise, from a current base of 4.3 million barrels a day to 6.6 million a day in 2035. But the US is projected to see a big an increase as well. From the current 10 million barrels of oil a day to 12.8 million in 2035.
But that’s the case only if we tap into it or are allowed to tap into it, much being found under land controlled by the federal government who has been anything but friendly to the idea here recently.
Production has risen strikingly fast in places such as the tar sands of Alberta, Canada, and the “tight” rock formations of North Dakota and Texas — basins with resources so hard to refine or reach that they were not considered economically viable until recently
Technology has made the recovery of these resources economically viable and they promise a abundant energy future.
Then, of course, there’s natural gas, something the US is blessed with in huge quantities as well. It is a distinct possibility that the use of natural gas will increase markedly over the next few decades as it is applied to more and more uses traditionally the realm of other energy sources. Part of that may come among auto and truck fleets. If so, then it is more than a “glimmer of a possibility of self-sufficiency” we’re beginning to see.
It is a real possibility.
But only if we use it. And, only if the government and radical environmentalists get out of the way.
One of those two problems can be helped this November.