EC Oil Drove Recovery

Over the last decade, the oil industry converted $1.2 trillion of import spending into GDP while saving US energy consumers another $2.4 trillion.

As presidential hopefuls scrum for leadership positions within the Democrat party, they’re uniformly predicting climate change catastrophe and proposing draconian changes in the way the US creates and uses energy. Since the incarnate evils in their green dogma are big oil and hydraulic fracturing, you’d think they were running against Exxon-Mobil (XOM) and Halliburton (HAL).

This article quantifies the oil industry’s contribution to America’s post-crash economic recovery using data from BP’s Statistical Review of World Energy. Then it considers whether draconian changes in US energy policy can make a meaningful difference in global CO2 emissions trends.

The last decade was a period of extraordinary change for domestic oil and gas producers as rig automation slashed costs, and precision horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing facilitated the development of shale formations that were previously considered uneconomic. Since the Obama administration was far from “oil-friendly,” I think the oil industry’s accomplishments despite gale-force political headwinds were mind-boggling.

From 2009 through 2018, the oil industry:

  • Doubled domestic oil production and made the US the world’s largest oil producer;
  • Slashed US oil imports from 4 billion barrels in 2008 to 1 billion barrels in 2018;
  • Converted $1.2 trillion of import spending into gross domestic product;
  • Made natural gas 75% cheaper in the US than it is in other industrialized countries;
  • Saved US consumers $2.4 trillion on their natural gas bills; and
  • Drove oil prices down to levels last seen in 2005.

Does the magnitude of these accomplishments surprise you as much as it did me?

Did you know the oil industry delivered American energy independence while politicians were throwing the weight of US energy policy behind solar panels, wind turbines, and electric cars?

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Dick Kaplan 2 years ago Member's comment

Excellent read, well worth the accolades. The ending really sums up how critical this issue is.

Susan Miller 2 years ago Member's comment

"Does the magnitude of these accomplishments surprise you as much as it did me?" Why yes, perhaps even more so!

Alexis Renault 2 years ago Member's comment

I was more concerned with this part:

While North America and Europe pared their collective CO2 footprint by 6%, the rest of the world grew emissions by 102%.

That's deeply troubling.

Jack Lifton 2 years ago Member's comment

There is no way to argue with the author's conclusions. This is all that needs to be said upon the subject.

Bill Johnson 2 years ago Member's comment

I agree completely.

Dave Schneider 2 years ago Member's comment

Great article.