Shock, Shock: US Crude Oil Manufacturing Is Surging

We could also be toiling within the post-truth age, however right here at we stubbornly stay caught in old-school habits and favor laborious information over the rising desire in some circles for creatively reframing details.

Working example: claims about US power manufacturing, which grew to become a hot-button subject at Wednesday’s Republican main debate. In case you accepted the candidates’ assertions it was straightforward to imagine that America’s power output has slumped sharply throughout the Biden administration. Former Vice President Mike Pence promoted this concept by arguing:

“One of many signature accomplishments of our administration was in only a few quick years we achieved power independence,” Pence stated. “However on day one, Joe Biden declared a battle on power.” He added that “We’re going to open up federal lands, we’re going to unleash American power, we’re going to have an all-of-the-above-energy technique.”

The not-so-subtle implication: a radical U-turn is required to reverse the dramatic decline in US power manufacturing. The fact, nonetheless, is sort of completely different when undertake the quaint thought of wanting on the actual numbers, based mostly on information from the US Power Info Administration. Weekly manufacturing of crude oil by means of Sep. 22, 2023 rose to 12.9 million barrels a day. For these of you conserving rating at residence, that interprets to an 18% improve since Biden was inaugurated on Jan. 20, 2021, which marks a pointy rebound from the falloff throughout the pandemic.  

The most recent output stage remains to be beneath the document peak of 13.1 million barrels for the week by means of Feb. 2020, however solely barely. If the current development persists, a brand new document excessive is probably going earlier than the 12 months ends.

One can argue that the present restoration in output isn’t enough and that the administration could possibly be much more aggressive in favoring what some would possibly time period a “drill, child, drill” coverage. However to counsel that America has deserted its capability to be power unbiased by way of home manufacturing requires an excessive bout of mental acrobatics that ignores the numbers searching for another narrative.

Actually, there’s a robust argument to make that the Biden administration, for all its discuss of pursuing a inexperienced power coverage, is transferring too gradual to curtail, a lot much less reverse, US fossil gas output. The numbers actually present help for that argument. However within the present realm of GOP politics there’s no urge for food to argue that view, to place it mildly.

Within the post-game evaluation/debate at Wednesday’s GOP discuss fest, for instance, California Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom highlighted the rise in US energy to Fox Information host and Republican stalwart Sean Hannity, who claimed “We had been power unbiased, and now we’re not.” Newsom accurately responded that “we’re extra power unbiased right this moment — that’s a truth, look it up.” We did, and Newsom’s proper, because the chart above signifies.

However Hannity persevered and falsely stated that “Joe Biden has unilaterally disarmed [US energy production].” The details counsel in any other case. Thankfully, details are cussed issues, at the very least for these involved in understanding actuality.

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