The People of America's Oil and Natural Gas Indusry

Growing U.S. Energy Self-Sufficiency

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted April 6, 2015

Statistics in the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s Monthly Energy Review for March show U.S. domestic energy production meeting about 89 percent of the country’s total energy demand. That’s up from 84 percent in 2013 and 2012 and reflects a key result of the domestic energy revolution: growing U.S. self-sufficiency.

Two charts. First, EIA data showing U.S. energy production as a percentage of total demand:


The top, heavier blue line is total U.S. energy production (fossil fuels, nuclear electric power and renewables – again, as a percentage of total U.S. energy demand. Domestic production’s share was about 69 percent in 2005 and it grew to about 89 percent last year. The lighter blue line below it is the share of fossil fuels (oil, natural gas and coal) as a percentage of overall demand. Fossil fuels accounted for approximately 55 percent in 2005, growing to about 70 percent last year.

A second chart, from EIA’s report, shows the long-term trend lines for each of the fuel sources:


Noteworthy are the output lines over the past decade for domestic crude oil and natural gas plant liquids (broken dark purple line) and natural gas (broken green line). Both are soaring. It’s a snapshot of surging domestic oil and natural production – the main engine of the U.S. energy revolution – and the leading reason the U.S. has become more self-sufficient.

In many ways energy self-sufficiency equates to energy security. The more of our energy needs met domestically – by an all-of-the-above range of sources – the less dependent the United States is on imported energy and its considerations. This is reflected in EIA numbers on falling net imports (Table 1.1, Page 3). The more energy we produce here at home, the more secure we are in the world.  

There’s not a lot of mystery about the components of America’s energy renaissance: vast reserves of oil and natural gas, safely produced from shale and other tight-rock formations with advanced hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling. Shale energy has rewritten the U.S. energy narrative while boosting the economy. EIA reports that last year the U.S. enjoyed the largest volume increase in crude oil production since records started being kept in 1900, increasing 1.2 million barrels per day to 8.7 million barrels per day.

It’s a story that can continue to grow – with greater access to reserves, both offshore and onshore. Planning is key, because pro-growth energy decisions must be made now for oil and natural gas production in the future.


Mark Green joined API after a career in newspaper journalism, including 16 years as national editorial writer for The Oklahoman in the paper’s Washington bureau. Mark also was a reporter, copy editor and sports editor. He earned his journalism degree from the University of Oklahoma and master’s in journalism and public affairs from American University. He and his wife Pamela live in Occoquan, Va., where they enjoy their four grandchildren.