The U.S. is overtaking Russia as the world’s largest producer of oil and natural gas, a startling shift that is reshaping markets and eroding the clout of traditional energy-rich nations.U.S. energy output has been surging in recent years, a comeback fueled by shale-rock formations of oil and natural gas. The U.S. ascendance comes as Russia has struggled to maintain its energy output and has yet to embrace technologies such as hydraulic fracturing that have boosted American reserves.
The U.S. produced the equivalent of about 22 million barrels a day of oil, natural gas and related fuels in July. Moscow’s forecast for 2013 oil-and-gas production works out to about 21.8 million barrels a day.U.S. imports of natural gas have fallen by 32%, in the past five years, narrowing the trade deficit.