U.S. oil consumption remains high even as the price of oil skyrockets, and the United States is forced to funnel money directly into unstable and hostile regimes to fund its habit.
“We are addicted to oil, and the oil is coming from the most dangerous places in the world,” former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright told attendees at a CAP event almost two years ago. And now, with oil and gas prices reaching record highs, the threat from our dependence on foreign oil to feed our carbon economy is more real than ever.
America’s Top Annual Suppliers of Crude Oil in 2007
Over Half of Crude Oil Imports Come from Unstable or Unfriendly Countries
SOURCE: Energy Information Administration
The United States imports approximately 62 percent of its oil. Canada supplies approximately 20 percent of these imports, and Mexico contributes 10 percent. But over 30 percent come from regimes that are less friendly or stable, including Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, Nigeria, Angola, Iraq, and Algeria (respectively the 2nd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, and 8th largest oil importers to the United States).
The good news is that we can transition to a low-carbon economy with tools that are already available to us. The Center for American Progress released a report, "Capturing the Energy Opportunity," which outlines five key steps that we can take right now to radically transform our security, economy, and environment:
- Implement an economy-wide cap-and-trade program for greenhouse gases.
- Transform our transportation networks by increasing vehicle fuel efficiency, boosting the production and availability of low-carbon alternative fuels, and investing in a low-carbon transportation infrastructure.
- Overhaul our electricity industry by improving efficiency, increasing production and consumption of renewable energy, and promoting the use of "advanced coal" through carbon capture-and-storage systems.
- Require the federal government, coordinated by a new White House National Energy Council, to manage the energy transformation and structure its own operations to reduce global warming and create a low-carbon economy.
- Advance international global warming policies.