Shale Development is Reducing Prices at the Pump

Thanks to record domestic production from shale development, American families are benefitting from lower prices at the pump.

A report by the independent market research company Lundberg Survey Inc. found that the average price of regular gasoline is down a significant 14.66 cents from one year ago. Over the course of just this past summer Lundberg rep­orts that: “Lower crude oil prices have been the main input over these 13 weeks of pump price-cutting.” For a more macro perspective, the report highlights that WTI prices have stayed below the international benchmark North Sea Brent every day since August 2010. That’s thanks in large part to the boom in domestic shale production.

While the United States is currently a part of and will remain a part of the complex global energy market, this is just the latest report to show how the rise in U.S. oil supplies has clear benefits for consumers. As a previous report from the Center for New American Security explains, “internationally, new U.S. oil supplies have helped to cap the price spikes caused by severe global supply disruptions and to moderate oil prices for consumers.” The American Automobile Association found that Americans would be paying 40 cents more per gallon of gas than they’re paying now were it not for shale development.

Shale’s ability to shield consumers from global price spikes has been pronounced given the recent events in the Middle East—specifically concerning the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries. Energy expert Dan Steffens said gasoline prices would be significantly higher without American shale development. As he explained: “With what’s going on the Middle East, I think it would five or six bucks [a gallon]. If it wasn’t for the shale revolution, you’d be in big trouble.

Even as many other countries experience unrest, the United States has managed to strengthen its energy security and reduce costs at the pump, thanks to shale development. That’s something no one thought was possible even just a few years ago, which goes to show how far reaching the benefits of shale development are.

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