The Global Energy Institute just released its 2018 edition of the International Index of Energy Security Risk, and it shows the United States with the second best energy security of the world’s largest energy consuming countries.
We are also very pleased that this edition of the report features a Foreword by U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry, who as the former governor of Texas knows a thing or two about energy.
The Index uses 29 metrics to assess energy security for a group of 25 countries that account for about four-fifths of global energy demand from 1980 to 2016, the latest year reliable data are available. Index scores also are calculated for 50 other countries and are available using our International Index interactive map. As you look at the country scores in the table below, remember that this is a risk index, so like a golf score, lower = better.
So if the United States is number two, who’s number one? Norway is again the most energy-secure country among the 25 countries in our large energy user, a position it has held since it took over first place from the United Kingdom in 2006.
But the big news is how much progress the United States has made in a short period of time, squeaking ahead of the United Kingdom for a second place finish in 2016. Considering that the United States was ranked 9th as recently as 2008, this is a truly remarkable run up the table in just eight years. 2008 is about the time the U.S. shale revolution kicked into high gear, and we’ve been reaping the energy, economic, and geopolitical benefits ever since. We’re now producing more energy than any other country in world. Secretary Perry’s Foreword is as succinct a summary as you can find of the circumstances that made the U.S. energy revolution possible and how we can keep it going.
Our North America Free Trade Agreement partners Canada and Mexico also rank high (seven and four, respectively). Together, these countries have created a combined energy powerhouse that is shifting the world’s energy center of gravity away from the Middle East towards North America.
At the other end of the table, Ukraine continues it unbroken record (since 1992) of being the least energy secure country of the 25 energy users we examine. Ukraine’s poor showing, however, belies significant gains the country has made, for example, in energy efficiency. It still has a long way to go, and political turmoil in the country could frustrate policies aimed at improving its energy security.
There’s a whole lot of good information in the report, and each of the 25 countries covered has a couple of pages dedicated to it. In addition to the report and the interactive tool mentioned earlier, the web site also makes available much of the data used in the report.
And as to the dramatic change in America’s energy security posture the report documents, we can’t say it any better than Secretary Perry, who noted: “There never was a shortage of energy, only a shortage of imagination and a loss of confidence in a nation’s ability to innovate.” Not anymore.