What are the energy problems the USA is facing, and why its energy insecurity is growing.

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What are the energy problems the USA is facing, and why its energy insecurity is growing.

Energy security gives countries the ability to get the energy needed, from a reliable source at an acceptable price.  The International Energy Agency (IEA) describes energy security as ‘’. A country needs to posses the necessary economic factors to make it energy secure, for example it may have the means of producing energy from its own sources, and then on top of that requires the economic ability to do so. On the other hand, energy insecurity is the term used when there is no means of energy supply or the economic factors to do so; therefore it is unreliable and may rely in imports of energy from elsewhere, instead of producing its own.

The USA requires vast amounts of energy for it to function the way it currently is doing, oil is used in every sector of its economy so when prices raise the entirety of the USA is affected. California alone benefits from having 16% of the USA’s oil reserves, but only 3% of its gas reserves, however it does produce 5% of the USA’s total electricity. In 2007 the USA consumed 21.3% of all global primary energy supplies and 23.8% of the world’s oil, the fact that the USA obtains most of its oil from overseas, particularly from the Middle East threatens its energy security, as it is relying on elsewhere to provide it for them, global sources of energy are unevenly distributed, many are located in politically unstable parts of the world, this often leads to the potential disruption of supplies. This is linked to the terrorist attack on the world trade centre on the 11th September 2001 this created energy problems for the USA due to its high dependence on imports from the Middle East its main energy source. ‘America must end its dependence on oil. When you’re hooked on oil from the Middle East, it means you’ve got an economic security issue and a national security issue’ – President Bush, 2006.

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The USA’s three main needs for energy are electricity generation, transport and heating, despite the fact that California produces 5% of the USA’s total electricity, it imports more electricity than any other state and also has more motor vehicles registered than any other state. The average American consumes over 100 times more energy than a citizen of the country with the world’s lowest consumption of electricity (Kiribati.)

Oil and natural gas are the major sources of fuel for the USA’s requirements; however reserves for fossil fuels are starting to run out. In 2007 the International Energy Agency (IEA) warned that ...

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