U.S. Energy Security Continues to Get Worse
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Higher and volatile energy prices and a jump in U.S. import expenditures driven by the spike in the price of oil has made America’s energy security more fragile than ever.
The U.S. energy security risk rose to a record high score of 101.3 in 2011, according to the Energy Institute’s most recent Index of U.S. Energy Security Risk released today. It marks the second year in a row of rising risk and only the third year on record that the index registered a risk score of 100 or above since 1970.
The Index incorporates the most up-to-date data and forecasts from the Energy Information Administration’s to provide an assessment of the energy trends having the greatest impact on energy security over the past year. The Index is based on a combination of 37 different energy security metrics covering the years 1970 to 2035. Scores above 90 suggest a high level of risk.
All the news in 2011 was not bad, however, as increasing shale gas production helped prevent energy prices, expenditures, and imports from rising even further. You can learn more about the opportunities presented by shale by looking at a new study co-sponsored by the Energy Institute, available at www.shaleworksforus.com
Cheap natural gas, along with continued use of coal, helped keep the lid on retail electricity prices. Government projections, however, suggest energy security risks will remain high for the next couple of decades—under the current policy framework. That’s all the more reason for America to pursue more opportunities to produce domestic energy at home.
In addition to the U.S. Index of Energy Security Risk, earlier this month the Energy Institute released the first-ever International Index of Energy Security Risk, which compares how U.S. energy security stacks up against the energy security of other large energy-consuming countries.