Nov. 12 - A major power shift will put the U.S. at the top of the energy production pyramid- ahead of Saudi Arabia and Russia, according to the IEA. Bobbi Rebell reports.
PLEASE NOTE: THIS EDIT CONTAINS 4:3 MATERIAL The U.S. could be energy independent and North America a net exporter of energy according to a new long term forecast from the International Energy Agency. The U.S. will overtake Russia as the biggest gas producer according to the IEA by 2015. 2017: The U.S. will become the world's largest oil producer. 2030: North America will export oil. And by 2035 the United States of America will be almost energy self-sufficient. That's in large part because of the shale oil boom. Societe Generale's Mike Wittner: SOUNDBITE: MIKE WITTNER, GLOBAL HEAD OF OIL RESEARCH, SOCIETE GENERALE (ENGLISH) SAYING: "The technology has made it a lot more cost efficient but what's really happened just in the last couple of years is that it- shale oil or tight oil from shale as the IEA says, has really moved from, you know, a relatively small piece of production and something that was a bit of a question mark and a bit of a wild card and in the last 2 years its really moved very fast and very dramatically to a rapidly growing piece of U.S. production." But there are some very real environmental concerns: SOUNDBITE: MIKE WITTNER, GLOBAL HEAD OF OIL RESEARCH, SOCIETE GENERALE (ENGLISH) SAYING: "There is some you know some valid concerns and issues have been raised about making sure that these wells that use fracking and the shale formations they need to be completed. They need to be constructed properly to safeguard drinking water and there is also the issue of what happens to the waste water that is generated." Assuming growth continues, the economic implications could be powerful, making U.S. businesses more competitive- and freeing up money for consumers. Michael Gayed, Chief Investment Strategist at Pension Partners: SOUNDBITE: MICHAEL GAYED, CHIEF INVESTMENT STRATEGIST, PENSION PARTNERS (ENGLISH) SAYING: "Rising oil prices are very much like a tax increase, falling oil prices are very much like a tax decrease if we are producing more that is somewhat of a net effect of a tax decrease on the consumer." And there are major economic geopolitical implications of energy independence as well. SOUNDBITE: MIKE WITTNER, GLOBAL HEAD OF OIL RESEARCH, SOCIETE GENERALE (ENGLISH) SAYING: "It's actually going to make it possible for the U.S. to pay less attention and actually foot less of the bill for protecting Middle Eastern oil supply and basically, in effect, say to China and other countries hey you guys are the big consumers now you guys have to step up and do your part." The IEA expects almost 90 percent of oil from the Middle East will be drawn to Asia by 2035.