Before we continue to talk about the different ways to become energy independent, we want to make one thing clear: complaining about the pressure on your budget, at a time when so many people are struggling for their lives, is, in itself, morally hardly defensible.
However, in times of conflict, when international leaders, whose policies you may or may not support, make major business decisions that disrupt the economy, it is normal for you to be on the lookout for the best solutions, in order to do what is best for you, those around you, and even the planet.
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Does the United States depend on Russia for its energy imports?
Russia is the world’s largest exporter of refined petroleum products, the second largest exporter of crude oil and the world’s third largest producer of refined petroleum products and natural gas. The fact that countries are stopping their imports from Russia at a time when many of these countries are depending on Russia to supply their electricity systems is a source of major concern.
As a reminder, Russia meets (or met, before the invasion of Ukraine) about forty percent of the gas needs that the European Union currently has. As for the United States, it is recognized as a “net exporter” country, which means that it produces more energy than it consumes.
What is energy independence?
In simple terms, theenergy independence implies not depending on someone else for the energy, produced and consumed. As we pointed out a little above, the United States is currently in a position to be considered technically independent because it exports more energy than it imports.
However, this has not always been the case. You can even see that the trend has reversed again, looking at the data provided by the EIA. Indeed, their imports started to increase again in June 2021.
And it’s not even possible to lay all the blame on the vagaries of the market, like Vladimir Putin’s decisions or the COVID-19 pandemic. Because in 2015 and 2017, the price of a barrel of oil in the world reached a record level of almost 70 dollars, which proves that these two factors are not the only ones to blame.
Therefore, despite the fact that the United States is responsible for producing all this energy, the market is still shaken, and the responsibility lies first and foremost with the regulator, namely theOrganization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).
Numerous studies have demonstrated that switching to alternative energy sources, powered by renewable resources, is the most effective approach to achieving theenergy independence.
For example, switching from a gasoline-powered vehicle to an electric vehicle on the road saves around six barrels of oil per year, while installing heat pumps leads to a decrease in the demand for natural gas.
the US Congress is considering long-term solutions, even as he debates legislation on sustainable energy and climate change. All this, in order to reduce the demand for natural gas and oil. In the meantime, the European Union encourages individuals to use environmentally friendly forms of energy themselves, and to moderate their daily consumption, when possible.