Petrobras Finds Oil in Gulf of Mexico

Amid Kenneth Rapoza’s Bric Breaker blog about the Brazilian oil giant’s find in the Gulf is the following paragraph about America’s interest in partnering up (my emphasis added):

In March, President Barack Obama told Brazilian officials that the US wanted to be a partner with Petrobras, a government run company. The US gets much of its oil from Canada and Venezuela, but new supplies coming on line from drama-free Petrobras would be good for the US who is on the constant look-out for crude from friendly states in friendly regions of the globe. The US spent $1.9 billion on Brazilian oil from January to May 31, according to the Ministry of Trade, up from $1.4 billion in the same period last year. Total volume was slightly over 2.937 million metric tons of crude oil, up marginally from 2.934 million metric tons in the same period last year.

First of all, I was curious about our oil consumption and how it gets here. So I looked around and found this handy little infographic from Frontline. It’s probably pretty old, based on the tech involved in it, so the numbers are probably out of date. But it still provides a useful visual of world petroleum production and consumption.

According to this more recent Consumer Energy Report the US receives 18% from Canada, 11% each from Mexico and Saudia Arabia, 10% from Venezuela, and 8% from Nigeria. It produces the bulk of the rest itself. 

Brazil has no presence on the graphic or the CER, which shows how relatively new it is to the game, I assume. But still, there is a clear window for a relationship with, as Rapoza says, a drama-free state. Canada and Mexico aside (for all it’s troubles, I wouldn’t classify our southern neighbor as dramatic in terms of oil imports), the US imports almost 30% of its oil - about 6 million barrels per day - from relatively unstable nations. If we’re currently import barely 3 million barrels in 5 months from Brazil, that means there is significant room for growth.

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