How much does the U.S. rely on Russia for energy imports?

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – With new sanctions announced Tuesday by President Joe Biden against Russia following the invasion of Ukraine, the News4JAX I-TEAM is looking into how much the U.S. actually relies on Russia when it comes to gas and oil.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is set to reshape the world’s energy markets as nations are cutting off oil and natural gas purchases from Russia, which is the third largest producer of both.

The U.S. imports Russian oil, but it’s not highly dependent on the country for its supply, according to U.S. energy experts.

“Expect a further jump in the price of oil with this announcement,” said Patrick De Haan, analyst with GasBuddy. “Makes it a little bit harder but compared to the EU, which imports about four-and-a-half million barrels of Russia’s crude oil. The U.S. is relatively safe without Russian imports. Europe is much more hostage to the Russians for oil.”

Last year, the United States relied on Russia for about 8% of its energy imports, and only 3% of that is crude oil.

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, America get most of its crude imports from Canada and Mexico.

Meanwhile, Russia supplies 40% of Europe’s gas and a quarter of its oil.

Energy experts say, in the short term, Americans can expect gas to rise to $4.50 cent a gallon mark, but the price of diesel fuel is also expected to reach a record high.

President Biden said “defending freedom is going to cost.”

“We’re moving forward with this plan understanding that many of our European allies and partners may not be in a position to join us. The United States produces far more oil domestically than all the European countries combined. In fact, we’re a net exporter of energy so we can take this step when others cannot,” Biden said.

Energy experts say Americans needs to reprogram themselves to conserve.

″Remember what happened in 2008: People got out their bicycles and started walking anywhere possible,” De Haan said. “Americans need to go into conservation mode and cut our consumption to improve the situation, there’s no other way around it.”

De Haan says depending on how long the war continues, it’s very possible in the coming weeks that the national average of gas could be more than $5 a gallon.


About the Author:

Tarik anchors the 4, 5:30 and 6:30 p.m. weekday newscasts and reports with the I-TEAM.