The United States has overtaken Nigeria and other countries for the first time in the exports of crude oil to the United Kingdom.
Punch reported that In January, the US supplied the equivalent of almost one in every four barrels of crude processed by UK oil refineries, or 264,000 barrels per day, illustrating the outsized role American oil now has in Britain’s energy mix.
The supplies surpassed that of Norway, Russia, Nigeria and Algeria which have been major suppliers to the UK.
While monthly export volumes can be volatile, the rising volume of US crude heading to the UK is part of a trend since Washington lifted widespread restrictions on exports in 2015.
In 2018, the average volume of US crude exported to the UK doubled to 160,000 bpd, second only to Norway over the course of the year and up from less than 20,000 bpd in 2016.
The increase in US crude supplies resulted as the country’s production rose close to 12 million bpd, up from just five million bpd a decade ago, thanks largely to oil supplies from Shale formations that have been exploited through advances in horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing
Also, shipments overseas have increased since the country lifted restrictions on exports that had been in place since the Arab oil embargoes of the 1970s, with Washington keen to reap the economic benefits and wield its energy clout as a tool of foreign policy.
According to the Energy Information Administration, the country’s oil exports averaged 1.9 million bpd in 2018, about twice the amount that was exported in 2017.