Mark the year 2037 on your calendars.
That’s the year the U.S. will not have to import any more oil, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.
“The new Independence Day,” joked Phil Flynn, energy analyst with Chicago-based Price Futures Group.
But, he actually was serious.
“Since the Arab Oil Embargo, it’s been our nation’s goal to become energy independent, and there’s been a lot done in that time to use less oil and become more fuel-efficient.”
Advances in hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling get much of the credit. Technology now can squeeze oil out of rocks. And, with net oil imports down from 13 million barrels a day in 2006 to about 5 million now, the U.S. is rising as a power player in the energy business, where it once was a craven customer that would pay whatever price one despot or another commanded. The U.S. is now actually positioning itself as the world’s dominant – and reliable — energy producer.