You may have seen in the news a recent report by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) ranking the 50 states in order of their vulnerability to oil prices. The report, entitled “Fighting Oil Addiction: Ranking States’ Oil Vulnerability and Solutions for Change” is fatally flawed.
Why? Because it’s based solely on the percent of income spent on gasoline by the average driver in 2007. HELLO! There’s A LOT more to oil vulnerability than just gasoline and income! What about reliance on home heating oil!? What about the percent of economic output that relies on oil!? And why doesn’t mainstream media pick up on this? I can answer the last question for you right now: sloppy journalism that seriously lacks critical analysis. Sheesh, journalism isn’t what it used to be. As for the other questions, well you’ll just have to ask the analytical “experts” working at NRDC.
View the list not as oil vulnerability, but as vulnerability to gasoline based transportation costs. For example, Maine ranks as #12, but it’s the state most reliant on home heating oil. Factor that in and I’m sure Maine would rise up the list. I’ll also add any relevant notes from the report. Here the top ten MOST vulnerable state:
- South Carolina
- New Mexico
Other interesting factoids to note from the report:
- The United States has less than 2% of the world’s oil supplies but is responsible for about 25% of the world’s oil consumption.
- 96% of our transportation relies on oil
- Imports of oil accounts for $449 billion of the $717 billion dollar trade deficit.
How well positioned is YOUR state? FMI on their report go to their site right here.
– Ranger Man