How American Fracking Changes the World
November 26, 2018
The most important news in world politics this month isn’t about diplomacy. Bigger than Brexit, more consequential than presidential tweetstorms, the American shale revolution is rapidly reshaping the global balance of power as energy prices plummet.
Until recently, observers expected American energy production to reach a plateau. A lack of pipeline capacity was expected to constrain output in the Permian Basin through 2020. Instead, shippers found ways to use existing pipelines more efficiently, and new pipelines were constructed faster than expected. U.S. crude-oil production is expected to average 12.1 million barrels a day in 2019, 28% higher than in 2017. Surging production has roiled world energy markets.
The biggest loser is Iran. Shale has been pummeling Tehran for some time. The economic benefits Iran hoped to gain from President Obama’s nuclear deal were largely offset by the sharp 2016 fall in the price of oil. Now the pesky Permian...
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