Does the Bygone-Hapless Admin know Why it Reached out to Venezuela?

I only ask that because i thought I knew, myself:
Because we need more oil, because we are no longer a net exporter, because of the Keystone pipeline and other regulations since 2021.
But today, my research has disclosed that we still ARE a net exporter of oil (See Forbes: “Surprise! ! The US is Still Energy Independent” (Rapier, 3/8/22). But, the price of oil (hence gasoline) is controlled by a global, not national market. Demand fell precipitously during the lockdowns, and price was so low it didn’t pay for production. Then demand has now skyrocketed so oil is very expensive everywhere on earth. Even if we were the ONLY nation which could produce it, our price nationally at the gas pump would still rise and fall with global demand.
So is this what Psaki is saying? That “big oil” cut production when the price was so low it just didn’t pay. Now that the price is high again, they will, or they should, come back into full capacity? And in the meantime, the pleas to Venezuela and Saudi Arabia aren’t to beg for a cup of gas because the US has run out, they’re to beg for an increase in global,supply, which vis à vis demand is the only factor that can lower prices…
We can be and we still are “energy independent” in terms of our supply of,oil itself, but we can never be independent of the global MARKET,in oil?
And really, all this “green energy” folderol, while it is undoubtedly the.most caustic salt-in-the-wound, actually is NOT what inflicted the wound in the first place?


Hyp all of that makes sense with one caveat: gas prices began rising in the US almost as soon as Joey Softserve was done with his Oaf of Orifice. I’m not saying that Forbes is wrong or anything but there has got to be more to it than this given the timing of the marked increase at the pump.

Yeah…and of course,it still doesn’t explain why not increase production HERE; wouldnt that have the same effect?

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Accounting will be the death of us, because there are lots of different ways of looking at numbers. Just one wrinkle to think about – refineries add hydrogen to oil to make more useful products. This hydrogenation increases the volume of imported oil. Should we count that “refinery processing gain” as part of US oil production or as part of the imported volume? Reasonable people can differ.

Here are some numbers from the Oil & Gas Journal, for the month up to Feb 18:

Total supply during that month - 27.5 Million Barrels per day
Broken down as:
US production of crude oil & Natural Gas Liquids - 17.3 Million Barrels per day
US imports of crude oil - 6.5 Million Barrels per day
US imports of refined products - 2.0 Million Barrels per day
US refinery gain - 1.6 Million Barrels per day

Approximately two-thirds of US oil & products supply came from the US, and about one third was imported.

However, it is not so simple, since some of the oil refined in the US is then re-exported. It really is a globally-integrated industry.

A side note about units to make our host’s eyes roll – the original petroleum engineers were classically educated, and hence used the Roman M as the symbol for 1,000. Thus a million becomes MM, and the accepted way to write Million Barrels per day is MMBD – unless one is Russian, in which case oil is measured by mass in metric tonnes instead of by volume.


One issue is that there is well depletion. This depletion is fast with tight oil (fracking). New reserves must be continuously found and new wells drilled. This takes capital. The big firms like Black Rock and the banks have upped the cost of capital for oil and gas. I read it is now 20 percent. Exploration is down and new wells are not being drilled to keep up with depletion.

To date the North American rig count is not back to early 2020 levels. The growth in production has come from restarting wells that were shut down and completing previously drilled wells (completing means the other things necessary to pump like connecting to pipelines).

The way that the big guy plays a part is in suppressing the risk taking. For example, in the gulf geological surveys are done to identify likely deposits. But you will need a permit to drill. Thus, if the big guy isn’t giving permits, then who is paying for the geo work. No geo work, no test wells, no discovery and a future shortage.

Europe is good example of mid term consequences of gov and finance working against oil and gas production. You find yourself without.

Energy is strategic. It is critical in my opinion to continually reduce dependence on oil. It is finite. But burning down your bridge before you have a new bridge is beyond idiotic.