Foreign oil dependence

Brendan Kelleher —  October 26, 2012 — Leave a comment

In the spirit of our blog name, #dataShows, I figured I should use some open data to “show something.”  (We want to try to do this every so often, be it here or twitter, and encourage the masses to chime in too.  If you’d like to guest blog, shoot us a message.  The more the merrier.)

A recent topic in the presidential debates has been foreign oil dependence.  Governor Romney has voiced his plans to reduce dependence on foreign oil, and instead rely more heavily on the Americas and/or natural gas.  President Obama wouldn’t really disagree with this sentiment either.  Now without turning this into a political discussion (I see more than my fair share of political commentary on Facebook), I got to thinking: how has foreign oil dependence been trending over the last several years?

We can answer that in a broad sense with the Energy Information Administration’s database of monthly petroleum imports.  This first datacard trends the number of barrels of petroleum imported into the US by region.  #dataShows that the Americas have been steadily on the rise, particularly since 2006 when Asia and Africa began to decline.

US Petroleum Imports by Region

US Petroleum Imports by Region (1993-present)

Examining further, #dataShows that Canada has been steadily on the rise and has seemingly replaced much of the oil that came from Saudi Arabia, Nigeria, and other leading importers of oil.

US Petroleum Imports by Country

US Petroleum Imports by Country (1993-2011)

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