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Sebastian Herbstreuth

Sebastian Herbstreuth is an independent writer. He completed a PhD at the Department of Politics and International Studies (POLIS) at the University of Cambridge.

For the past forty years, the United States has been dependent on foreign oil. In the early 1970s, declining domestic production and America’s ever increasing thirst for oil made dependency on imports a necessity, whilst the OPEC Revolution and the 1973 Arab oil embargo seemed to also make dependency a serious threat to national security. Beginning with the formulation of Nixon’s “Project Independence”, the US has sought to reverse this worrisome position and restore what is usually imagined as a quasi-paradisiacal state of nature: energy independence. Yet, while president after president emphasised the importance of tackling the problem, US net oil imports kept rising, until they peaked in 2005 at about 12.5 million barrels of oil per day, 65% of …