Natural Gas Is Taking Over: Ritholtz Chart

Barry Ritholtz is a Bloomberg View columnist. He founded Ritholtz Wealth Management and was chief executive and director of equity research at FusionIQ, a quantitative research firm. He blogs at the Big Picture and is the author of “Bailout Nation: How Greed and Easy Money Corrupted Wall Street and Shook the World Economy.”
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Natural gas could replace oil as the key energy source in the U.S. At least that's what the chart below, from Torsten Slok, chief international economist for Deutsche Bank, seems to suggest.

Over the past decade, natural gas consumption has increased from 22 percent to 27 percent of U.S. energy use and nearly all of that gain has come at the expense of petroleum consumption. It isn't that hard to figure out why: Natural gas is cleaner, cheaper and abundant in the U.S. Natural gas is also easier to transport thanks to a system of domestic pipelines.

If the trend continues (and that's a big if), then sometime in the next decade, natural gas consumption should surpass oil.

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To contact the author on this story:
Barry L Ritholtz at britholtz3@bloomberg.net