Oil from the Persian Gulf

August 29th, 2008

Posted by: Roger Pielke, Jr.

In his speech last night at the Democratic National Convention Barack Obama said the following:

And for the sake of our economy, our security, and the future of our planet, I will set a clear goal as president in ten years, we will finally end our dependence on oil from the Middle East.

I’ll discuss this in depth next week, but for now I simply would like to put up a placeholder indicating how much oil the U.S. currently imports from the Persian Gulf region, as provided by the US EIA.

[UPDATE: The Environmental Capital blog of the WSJ has a critical take here.]

4 Responses to “Oil from the Persian Gulf”

  1. James Rufo Hill Says:

    Looking forward to further analysis. While total imports are important, it might also be nice to see the data explained by company and profits. In other words, from which regions are U.S. firms profiting the most?

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  3. srgoulet Says:

    And here is the incredible conclusion from the WSJ blog posting: “Sen. Obama’s call for oil independence sounded strong in the speech. But the reality is it could just end up shifting America’s oil addiction from one supplier to another.”

    File that under “Blatantly obvious things a wing nut would point out to try and make Obama look bad”. I think most of us endowed with common sense could figure out that we’ll have to get oil elsewhere when we end our dependence on the middle east.

    A little more in depth analysis might have pointed out that the global oil market is very sensitive to supply and demand, and the price of of our oil would still be effected by a Middle East embargo, even if when we stop buying it from them.

    Additionally, the fact that we are trading with the Middle East in such vast quantities (of oil and money) helps insure that we are at least partners in business. Those partnerships keep us very motivated to cooperate with one another, and with each others governments. Break those relationships and you risk major political problems.

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  5. Raven Says:

    Ironically, a cap and trade or any other anti-CO2 policy will likely increase how much the US imports from unreliable partners because they have the “cleanest” oil. Oil from reliable partners like Canada tends to produce a lot of GHGs during production. I am curious how the democrats will react once the contradiction inherent in their rhetoric becomes impossible to ignore.

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  7. TokyoTom Says:

    “Energy security” is chiefly a slogan bandied about by politicians to make us feel that are defending us when they shift billions an trillions to defense and to “alternative” energy/”clean” coal, etc. – when what is really happening is that we are being both manipulated and fleeced for the benefit of special interest insiders.

    There are no monopoly sellers, and oil is worthless to even the corruptest oil regime unless it`s sold.