OPEC's Influence on the U.S.

OPEC Overview
Before OPEC
OPEC's Rise to Power
OPEC Price Fixing
OPEC - U.S. Sovereign Status Part 1
OPEC - U.S. Sovereign Status Part 2: Challenges
OPEC's Influence on the U.S.


The formation of OPEC in 1960 was arguably the most profound economic and political decision of the 20th century. It would irrevocably change the global landscape, and its impact continues to be felt the world over.

OPEC’s influence on US domestic policy (to say nothing of its foreign policy) has also been profound. The oil embargo and energy crisis in 73-74 resulted in a variety of changes, such as:

daylight savings time was temporarily implemented year-round in 1974;

the Emergency Highway Energy Conservation Act established the national speed limit at 55 to conserve fuel (also in 1974);

In 1975 Congress created the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve which is the world’s largest, currently holding 699 million barrels of oil ;

In 1977 President Carter formed the US Department of Energy, the current annual budget of which is over $23 billion;

The embargo also opened the US automobile market to smaller, more efficient foreign-made cars, as opposed to the large, gas-guzzling vehicles produced at the time by the Big Three.

Yet perhaps the most relevant effect was to show the West just how reliant it was on foreign oil, consequently launching the search for alternative energy and renewable resources—a search that has developed into a revolution, with the progress of alternative fuel vehicles and technology aimed squarely at reducing then ultimately ending the global influence and power of OPEC.

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Before OPEC
OPEC History
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