The United States and the world are still dependent on Russia’s energy as oil prices rise

As Russia’s invasion of Ukraine continues, the global economy’s continued reliance on Russia’s oil and gas has led to a wave of policy response, along with opposition from U.S. legislators seeking to stop imports and expand domestic production. rice field.

Brent crude, a major international benchmark, has skyrocketed since the invasion began on February 24, rising from less than $ 97 per barrel to over $ 107 as of March 1.

In 2021, 524 million tonnes of Russia will produce more oil than any other country except Saudi Arabia and the United States.

The International Energy Agency reports that its major oil destinations include OECD Europe and China, which receive about 60% and 20% of Russia’s oil exports, respectively.

US crude oil imports from Russia more than doubled last year, rising from an average of about 76,000 barrels a day in 2020 to an average of 209,000 barrels a day in 2021. data From the Energy Information Administration (EIA).

According to the report, in November 2021, Russia supplied about 8.5 million barrels of crude oil per day and 595,000 barrels of US-imported commodities. EIA— Completely 7 percent of those imports.

Sean Strawbridge, Chief Executive Officer of Corpus Christi, Texas, said the United States had imported more Russian crude oil to replace Venezuela’s heavy crude oil after Washington approved PDVSA, the state-owned oil company in Venezuela.

Many refineries along the US Gulf are designed to process heavy oils rather than light oils from the Permian basin in the southwestern United States.

“We’re hoping for more American refinery modifications to allow for the refining of lighter, sweeter crude oil, but they’re more expensive raw materials,” says Strawbridge. I am.

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Pumpjack will be seen at dawn on March 24, 2014, near Lost Hills, California. (David McNew / Getty Images)

He told the Epoch Times that current US sanctions would be less effective as they would allow Russia’s oil and gas to continue flowing.

On a web page about the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, the IEA said the invasion “at this time does not result in a loss of oil supply to the market.” IEA officials did not respond at a press conference to the Epoch Times request for comment on whether that was still the case.

On March 1, the United States and other IEA members agreed to release 60 million barrels of oil. US Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said in a statement that the United States would release 30 million barrels from its strategic petroleum reserves.

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The gas station will serve customers at peak prices in Irvine, CA on February 23, 2022. (John Fredericks / The Epoch Times)

Russia produces 11 million barrels of oil per day, and the United States consumes about 20 million barrels of oil per day.

The world consumes about 97 million barrels of oil per day. In other words, this emission is equivalent to about 16 hours of global oil consumption.

“It doesn’t move the needle,” Strawbridge said.

The IEA does not include China and India, the most populous countries in the world.

India, which has long relied on Russian weapons, has not sanctioned or explicitly condemned Moscow for its actions in Ukraine. No China has recently signed a 30-year gas pipeline contract with the country.

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has also postponed Russian sanctions.

“We want to build good relations with all the governments of the world, so we do not receive any kind of economic retaliation.”

Russian national energy company Lukoil has recently moved to buy a 50% stake in Mexico’s offshore oil project.

Canada has moved to ban Russia’s oil imports, but oil imports from Russia are negligible.

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Edmonton’s Suncor refinery seen on June 17, 2015. (AFP via Getty Images / Geoff Robins)

In the United States, some lawmakers are calling for strong energy sanctions on Russia and measures aimed at promoting domestic production.

In a statement on February 28, Senator Joe Manchin (DW.Va.) Called on the Biden administration to “take immediate action, including a ban on crude oil imports from Russia.”

“If there was a time when we weren’t dependent on energy, it’s now,” he said.

Meanwhile, Senator Tom Cotton (Republican) argued that the United States should reopen the Keystone XL pipeline and lift restrictions on domestic oil and gas production. In an interview with George Stephanopoulos of ABC News on February 27, White House spokesman Jen Psaki called Cotton’s recommendation for the Keystone pipeline a “misdiagnosis.”

In that interview, Saki said sanctions on Russia’s energy were “certainly at the table.”

“We also want to do that, minimize its impact on the global market, and do it in a unified way,” she told Stefanopros.

Strawbridge said: Now is the time to untie your shoelaces.

“We have to see more excavations.”

Reuters contributed to this report.

Nathan Worcester


Nathan Worcester is an environmental reporter for The Epoch Times.