Donald A. Norman, Ph.D., senior economist
While the recent attention paid to rising U.S. oil production clearly is warranted, the other side of the coin -- the trend in U.S. petroleum consumption -- also deserves recognition because it is no less dramatic, especially against the backdrop of long-term forecasts made just a few years ago. It once appeared inevitable that economic growth would be accompanied by increased consumption of oil and petroleum products. Now, long-term projections of relatively flat growth in petroleum consumption coupled with projections of increasing oil production (which will add to the diversity of world oil supplies) point to an improvement in the U.S. energy balance. Issues in Brief

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