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Joint Meeting Pacific Section, AAPG & Cordilleran Section GSA April 29–May 1, 2005, San José, California

Circum Pacific Energy Trends: Concern for the Future

Daniel A. Cox
USGS, Menlo Park, CA 94024, [email protected]

Tools for exploring Circum Pacific energy data, developed in conjunction with Powering the Rim (www.poweringtherim.org), reveal certain trends with important implications for the future of this region. The U.S., the dominant regional energy consumer, has exhibited a policy of continued reliance on petroleum and other fossil fuel resources, even as worldwide oil and gas demand, especially in China and other developing countries, has strengthened. The importation of petroleum and natural gas will play an increasingly significant role in meeting national energy needs with the coupling of regional economic growth and a dwindling petroleum resource base. In the Circum Pacific, the United States, China, and Japan individually and collectively overwhelm the consumption of resources over all other nations. The competition for energy resources amongst the major and minor energy consumers in the Circum Pacific could be politically destabilizing. Furthermore, the consequences of business-as-usual energy strategies may require costly social, economic, and environmental sacrifices in the future that could be avoided with informed planning now. This report, with emphasis on the United States, affirms the need for a more diversified U.S. energy strategy and clarifies the capability to do so.

Posted with permission of The Geological Society of America; abstract also online (http://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2005CD/finalprogram/abstract_85772.htm). © Copyright 2005 The Geological Society of America (GSA).