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MI Responds: Mark Mills on Russian Energy Dependence and Rising Energy Prices

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MI Responds: Mark Mills on Russian Energy Dependence and Rising Energy Prices

March 7, 2022
Energy & EnvironmentGeopolitics

Manhattan Institute senior fellow Mark Mills on Russian energy dependence in light of rising energy prices and continued geopolitical instability: 

"That the world, not just Europe, is deeply dependent on Russian oil and gas has become glaringly obvious. That reality was baked in by the energy policies put in place over the past two decades – policies that were naïve about the technological realities of energy supply. And now there are precious few tools in the toolkit of short-term options to respond to the strategic and economic mess in which we find ourselves. But we can, finally, signal to the world that the future will be different with new energy policies: call it a "Great Energy Reset."

Even if it takes years to make a dent in today’s dependencies, a signal to markets that the near-term energy future will be different can make a difference in prices today. That difference would be an acknowledgement that the world will need lots of oil and gas for a very long time, and that the United States can play a far bigger role in supplying those needs—a message which would both drive down prices and decrease strategic risks.

The key takeaway is this: America’s shale fields added nearly 500% more energy to global energy supply in a decade than did all of the world’s expansion of wind and solar. Re-embracing a policy that acknowledges this reality could alleviate prices and restore a degree of security."

About Mark Mills: 

Mark Mills is a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute. His book The Bottomless Well made the case in 2005 that the U.S. was energy-rich, arguing against the popular theory at the time that the country was running out of oil. Mills shared his thesis before Congress, the sole witness predicting a boom. Later, Mills extended his argument to suggest the U.S. should export crude oil, before the law banning exports was eliminated (a feat most commentators theorized would never happen). At the time, Mills coined the phrase "energy dominance" instead of "energy independence," testifying before the U.S. Senate before the Trump administration even took office. Later, in 2015, Mills predicted the shale revolution had only just begun, responding to the oil collapse of 2014. Regarding the current geopolitical situation, Mills has been consistently vocal about the importance of energy dominance as a matter of national security against foreign instability. 

Photo by kodda/iStock

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