Recently, both the Christian Science Monitor and Scientific American included comments I made about how the domestic energy picture has changed in the 40 years since the OPED oil embargo. Excerpts are below. To see my latest pieces and comments, click here.
From the Christian Science Monitor:
“All the easiest oil has been developed,” Jack Rafuse, former energy adviser to the Nixon White House and principal of the Rafuse Organization, a Virginia-based energy consulting firm, says in a telephone interview. “… But the US has used much more oil than the world ever knew even existed and continues to do so. That’s the way oil reserves work. You keep finding more and developing new technologies.”
From Scientific American:
Unlike past attempts to get off foreign oil, the current push might actually succeed, according to Jack Rafuse, principal of Rafuse Consulting in Washington, D.C., who was the White House Energy Adviser to Nixon during the 1973 embargo. “We really are in a different position to finally break the cycle, because of the rapid increase in shale oil and shale gas.” That is, fracking unconventional deposits of both fossil fuels.
Oil demand has decreased across the past five years because of the new wave of steepCAFÉ increases put into effect by the Obama Administration. Under the regulations, gas mileage will continue to rise significantly through 2025. Furthermore, natural gas should continue to replace oil in power plants and home heating, while oil fuels transportation. Indeed, the EIA has stated that shale gas and shale oil could make the U.S. energy independent by 2030. This time, Rafuse says, the driver is supply and demand economics, not policy or presidential decrees. The one political move that would help the changeover, he notes, “is an end to bans like the one New York State has on fracking.” Needless to say, environmental concerns may not provide such smooth sailing.