According to mean estimates from the U.S. Geological Survey, ANWR would produce 10.4 billion barrels of new domestic oil. How Long Could Your State Run on ANWR Oil?

Recent disruptions in oil production caused by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, coupled with America’s increasing dependence on foreign oil, have once again exposed the frailty of our nation’s energy supply.  And as Americans continue to face sticker shock at the pump and quiver in anticipation of expensive home heating bills this winter, the need for increased domestic production has reached the forefront of the American psyche. 

Shortly after Congress returns from recess next week, the Senate will consider a budget reconciliation package.  Included in the bill is a provision to open a tiny sliver of land in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) to oil and gas exploration. 

Setting aside for a moment the lunacy and hypocrisy that define the arguments of those who oppose exploring this “footprint” of frozen tundra, nearly all geological experts who have studied the area agree that ANWR represents America’s largest untapped onshore prospect for oil and gas.

According to mean estimates from the U.S. Geological Survey, ANWR would produce 10.4 billion barrels of new domestic oil.  Just how much is 10.4 billion barrels?  It’s enough to replace more than 30 years worth of oil imported from Saudi Arabia or over 58 years of oil imported from Iraq

Put another way, comparing the 10.4 billion barrels with the Energy Information Administration’s 2001 figures* showing petroleum consumption per state, ANWR would supply our nation’s capital with 1,704 years worth of petroleum.  It would supply Idaho with 363 years worth of petroleum or Maine with 249 years worth. 

See the chart below to find out how long your state could run on ANWR oil.

 State

 # of Years**

Alabama

103

Alaska

203

Arizona

107

Arkansas

146

California

15

Colorado

119

Connecticut

130

Delaware

396

District of Columbia

1,704

Florida

29

Georgia

54

Hawaii

250

Idaho

363

Illinois

42

Indiana

67

Iowa

132

Kansas

140

Kentucky

100

Louisiana

36

Maine

249

Maryland

100

Massachusetts

75

Michigan

52

Minnesota

83

Mississippi

116

Missouri

76

Montana

343

Nebraska

254

Nevada

226

New Hampshire

312

New Jersey

46

New Mexico

220

New York

33

North Carolina

58

North Dakota

393

Ohio

43

Oklahoma

97

Oregon

154

Pennsylvania

39

Rhode Island

568

South Carolina

119

South Dakota

497

Tennessee

80

Texas

9

Utah

217

Vermont

611

Virginia

62

Washington

68

West Virginia

263

Wisconsin

83

Wyoming

370

* 2001 is the most recent year for which figures are available from the Energy Information Administration showing petroleum consumption per state.

** The numbers of years were rounded down to illustrate only complete years each state could run on ANWR oil.                                                                                                      

October 13, 2005
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