Washington, DC – US consumers could see their energy bills shrink and more than one million jobs would be created if the government in Washington, DC ended its nearly four decades-old ban on crude oil exports, according to two reports published by the American Petroleum Institute (API) and the industry research firm IHS.
The API report forecasts “broad-based economic gains” if the oil ban were lifted, repeating its assertion that exporting oil would economically benefit not only oil-producing states but other states as well.
Eighteen US states could gain over 5,000 jobs each in 2020 from exports of US crude oil, said Kyle Isakower, the API’s vice president for regulatory and economic policy.
Most states, he added, “could see economic activity grow by hundreds of millions of dollars due to growing energy production and downward pressure on the prices at the pump, while the US is poised to become the world’s largest oil producer, and access to foreign customers will create economic opportunities across the country.” .
“When it comes to crude oil, the rewards of free trade are not limited to energy-producing states. New jobs, higher investment, and greater energy security from exports could benefit workers and consumers from Illinois to New York, especially in areas where consumer spending and manufacturing drive growth,” said Isakower.
In its own study released the same time as the API report, Colorado-headquartered IHS predicts an end to the export restrictions “could inject $746 billion in additional investment into the economy between 2016 and 2030, while increasing domestic oil production by an average of 1.2 million barrels more per day.”
The additional crude oil supply, the report said, “would lower gasoline prices by an annual average of 8 cents per gallon with the combined savings for US motorists during the 2016-2030 period translating into $265 billion compared to a situation where the restrictive trade policy remains in place.”
A boost to the US economy would be “rapid” and “accompanied by a surge of capital that could help depress gas prices in the longer term and lower the country’s own petroleum imports by nearly 1 million b/d in 2016 for a savings of more than $43 billion, it said.
The current US oil and gas boom “is a huge win for us, but it takes a little education” for drivers to appreciate the economic benefits of flooding global markets with American crude,” the API’s Isakower said. “The public will get behind crude exports when they see a benefit for themselves.”
Last year, the Council on Foreign Relations released its own report, which concluded that, “Removing all proscriptions on crude oil exports, except in extraordinary circumstances, will strengthen the US economy and promote the efficient development of the country’s energy sector.”