Recommendations for a New Administration
Give Hemispheric Energy Policy a Strategic Vision
Four years ago, U.S. energy policy in the Americas arose from a sense of energy scarcity. Today the situation has changed. By 2020, the United States could overtake Saudi Arabia as the world's largest oil producer. And thanks to shale gas deposits, it could be a net natural gas exporter. First, greater supplies generally mean a decline in prices, benefitting consumers and nations that have few energy resources of their own. Second, a decline in U.S. fossil fuel imports could also shrink dependence on foreign suppliers with hostile agendas or that attach political conditions on sales. Anticipating this possibility, the United States could adopt a Western Hemisphere energy policy that strengthens relations with neighbors, extends access to energy to broader populations, and lessens dependence on energy from hostile powers.