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Manhattan Institute

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Expanding America's Petroleum Power: Geopolitics in the Third Oil Era

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Expanding America's Petroleum Power: Geopolitics in the Third Oil Era

February 11, 2016
Energy & EnvironmentGeopoliticsTechnology / Infrastructure

Abstract

The majority of world petroleum trade remains dominated by nation-state companies, often directed by authoritarian regimes that wield energy riches as weapons of influence or intimidation. There has never been a more opportune time for America to capture the geopolitical "soft power" benefits from greater oil production and exports.

Key Findings

  • Oil markets are cyclical: today’s low prices will inevitably rebound, just as prices always fall when peaks occur.
  • The global economy requires more petroleum now than 40 years ago, for transportation and trade—making oil more critical than ever.
  • If, in the next decade, the U.S. were to replicate the shale production growth of this past decade, the nation would reap not only a second shale boom but also a tectonic shift in the geopolitical status quo.

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