Last updated on: 7/31/2009 1:19:00 PM PST
Where did the US obtain its oil prior to the Iraq War?


General Reference (not clearly pro or con)
The US National Energy Policy Development Group stated in its May 16, 2001 National Energy Policy Report [otherwise known as 'the Cheney Report']:

"In 2000, nearly 55 percent of U.S. gross oil imports came from four countries: 15 percent from Canada, 14 percent each from Saudi Arabia and Venezuela, and 12 percent from Mexico.

By 2020, Gulf oil producers are projected to supply between 54 and 60 percent of the world's oil. Thus, the global economy will almost certainly continue to depend on the supply of oil from Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) members, particularly in the Gulf. This region will remain vital to U.S. interests...

Canada's oil trade, responding to market signals, increased 4 percent worldwide and 10 percent with the United States in the last year. Estimates of Canada's recoverable heavy oil sands reserves are substantial, and new technologies are being deployed to develop their potential. Production from these promising areas now approaches 600,000 barrels a day. Their continued development can be pillar of sustained North American energy and economic security.

Mexico is a leading and reliable source of imported oil, and its large reserve base, approximately 25 percent larger than our own proven reserves, makes Mexico a likely source of increased oil production over the next decade.

Columbia has also become an important supplier of oil to the United States.

Venezuela is the world's fifth largest oil exporter, and the third largest oil supplier to the United States. Its energy industry is increasingly integrated into the U.S. marketplace. Venezuela's downstream investments in the United States make it a leading refiner and gasoline marketer here.

Brazil has long been a pioneer in the development of deep-water offshore oil and gas resources. Its world class oil industry is now moving to become a partner with the U.S. and international investors to more fully develop its prolific offshore oil reserves.

In 2000, OPEC member Nigeria exported an average of 900,000 barrels of oil per day to the United States, out of its total production of 2.1 million barrels of oil per day.

In 2000, Angola exported 300,000 barrels of oil per day out of its 750,000 barrels of oil per day out of its 750,000 barrels of oil per day of total production to the United States, and is thought to have the potential to double its exports over the next ten years. Other significant exporters to the United States included Gabon and the Congo-Brazzaville.

The World Bank has supported Chad's efforts to begin ambitious oil development. This year an international consortium that includes U.S. firms began investing $3.5 billion in this pipeline from Chad to Cameroon, the largest infrastructure project in Africa today. When complete, the pipeline will allow Chad to export up to 250,000 barrels of oil per day."


May 16, 2001 - National Energy Policy Development Group 

Michael T. Klare, Five College Professor of Peace and World Security Studies at Hampshire College, stated in an article titled "Bush-Cheney Energy Strategy: Procuring the Rest of the World's Oil," published in the Jan. 2004 edition of Foreign Policy In Focus:

"The United States currently obtains only about 18% of its imported petroleum from the Persian Gulf area. But Washington perceives a strategic interest in the stability of energy production there because its major allies, including Japan and western Europe, rely on imports from the region. Also, the gulf's high export volume has helped to keep the world oil prices relatively low, benefiting the U.S. economy. With domestic production in decline, the National Energy Policy observes, the Persian Gulf 'will remain vital to U.S. interests'.

Another area the Bush administration views as a promising source of oil is West Africa. Although African states accounted for only about 10% of global oil production in 2000, the Department of Energy predicts that their share will rise to 25% by 2020.

Finally, the Cheney plan calls for a significant increase in U.S. oil imports from Latin America. The United States already obtains a large share of its imported oil from the region. Venezuela is now the third largest supplier of oil to the United States, after Canada and Saudi Arabia; Mexico is the fourth largest, and Columbia is the seventh."


Jan. 2004 - Michael T. Klare, PhD