US Oil Consumption By Source 1960-2020

Watch the history of oil consumption in the United States which shows some very interesting trends, especially in recent years. The US reliance on OPEC is now almost non-existent due to the increased production of domestic supplies due to shale oil and greater imports coming in from Canada.

This may have been exaggerated due to Covid, since total oil consumption plummeted in 2020. However, the US's oil consumption being mainly supplied by North America will probably not change in the near future.

OPEC and Persian Gulf Oil

We really start to see the influence of OPEC and Persian Gulf oil imports in the US starting in the 1970's. Before then, most of the US consumption of oil came from domestic sources. However, that influence shrank significantly in the 1980's as Americans adapted to using smaller cars after the oil shock of 1979.

Throughout the 1980's, oil consumption stayed largely flat and domestic oil sources were able to handle most of the supply. We started to see the influence of OPEC and Persian Gulf imports again the 1990's and into the 21st century as energy demands started rising again and domestic oil production was significantly reduced. By 2008, OPEC imports supplied almost as much oil as domestic sources.

The Rise of Shale Oil and Canadian Oil Imports

After the financial crisis o 2008, we again start to see the reduction of oil imports coming from OPEC and the Persian Gulf. This is largely due to the advent of shale oil and fracking technologies in both the US and Canada as well as the more efficient extraction of oil from the Canadian oil sands.