Report: U.S. Energy Production to Hit Record Highs
Even as reports are being released that suggest that the United States will slowly increase its energy output, the American government itself has underscored that fact with its own report detailing energy-related forecasts through 2040.
The report, issued by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), draws many conclusions, perhaps most important among them the fact that, while American energy imports accounted for 19 percent of its population’s use in 2011, that same number will drop to only 9 percent in 2040 as the country positions itself as a world energy powerhouse. (Read More: How Much Oil Does the World Produce?)
Those numbers include an expected crude oil effect that will see imports accounting for liquid fuel consumption in the U.S. drop from its current 45 percent to 34 percent in 2019.
This expected loosening of U.S. dependency on foreign energy sources comes thanks to new energy initiatives within the country, including the exploration of new oil fields in states such as North Dakota and Arizona, as well as increasing deep drilling for reservoirs in the Gulf of Mexico. While these more local sources of crude are expected to go into decline by 2020, natural resources are expected to allow for steady production even after forecasted peaks are reached.
The report itself was released as the country continues to investigate how much it will profit from energy exports into the future, with the EIA citing the year 2016 as the one where the U.S. becomes a net exporter, providing the nation with vastly increased income. (Read More: Why Are Permits Needed for LNG Export Terminals?)
An ongoing battle between the estimates offered by that agency and those of the many private firms that track production numbers is creating serious debate regarding just when increased exports should begin, as everyone involved attempts to avoid the potential impact on domestic fuel costs that unmonitored exports could cause.
“(The) EIA has a history of grossly underestimating the ingenuity and productivity of the American renewable fuels industry,” said Bob Dinneen, president of the Renewable Fuels Association, in response to the report. (Read More: The Effect of New Production Methods on U.S Oil Output)
While most numbers are “on the same page,” this latest report is finding strong opposition among some analysts for its apparent low-balling of biomass fuel source predictions.