Despite decades of gloom and doom predictions on the American energy sector, a new report from the International Energy Alliance has naysayers on their heels. According to the IEA's 2012 World Energy Outlook, the United States will be the leading producer of natural gas by 2017 and will quickly outpace Saudi Arabia as the leading producer of oil. The Washington Post notes that analysts predict this production increase will help the U.S. slash energy imports, cut deeply into the trade deficit, and in turn put the country on pace to be energy self-sufficient by 2035.
The growth in energy production and coming fracking boom has voters and legislators in benefiting states coming together on a bipartisan basis. States bringing in enormous income from the boom are debating the best ways to take it in and save it in various ways, or shift tax burdens, or pay citizens dividends. How these investments pay off could take the wind out of the sails of the environmental movement, and put pressure on legislators regarding energy and environmental policy in other states.
On 'Real News' Wednesday the panel discussed what we can to take from this IEA report, and how sovereignty comes into play with states implementing plans for regulating and making the most long term impact of production gains.