New oils are emerging in the United States and worldwide. The degree to which global oils differ from one another is increasing, from carbon-laden oils that resist flow to ultra-light petroleum liquids trapped in tight shale oil. Developing these unconventional oils requires a clear departure from business-as-usual practices. The Carnegie Oil Initiative provides expert analysis, strategic guidance, and policy frameworks to manage new oil assets while protecting the climate.
Carnegie’s work to understand emerging new oils has been ongoing since our seminal publication, Understanding Unconventional Oil, in 2012. All publications from this project are archived here.
Recent upheavals in the oil market, most notably the growth in North American unconventional oil and the evolving response of OPEC, are prompting a reappraisal of conventional wisdom across a number of areas.
As the United States assumes the role of a major energy producer and partial exporter, key thinkers in the U.S. and the EU are looking to modernize the transatlantic partnership as a foundation for greater collaboration on twenty-first century energy and security challenges.
The oil price is back to ‘normal.’ But for the major Middle East and North Africa region oil exporters, it is not going to be business as usual.
The oil price is the most obvious trigger of change in the relationship between host governments and investors.
China continues to view Venezuela as a key source of oil, but Beijing has also been strengthening its private and public energy partnerships with other Latin American countries.
Climate talks have largely failed to curb rising temperatures. Subnational actors that seek to transform their local energy systems can benefit from California and Germany’s expertise.
China must improve its monitoring of petcoke, an alternative fuel source, in order to successfully address the country’s air pollution challenges.
From its sheer volumes to what it’s made of and its environmental impacts, the next century of oil will likely be very different from the last.
China must address the negative environmental impact of petcoke, an inexpensive but dirty alternative to coal, if the country’s efforts to manage carbon emissions are to be effective.
The U.S.-China joint climate statement that was announced last November is a first step toward addressing climate change, but success will depend on further global collaboration.