Elon Musk Wants The USA To Produce More Oil

Government / 22 Comments

It's an odd request, but it does make sense.

There are days when Elon Musk makes no sense at all and days when he's the very manifestation of logical thinking.

Musk proved as much recently when he tweeted his support for increased oil and gas output in the USA. "Hate to say it, but we need to increase oil & gas output immediately. Extraordinary times demand extraordinary measures," the infamous billionaire owner of Tesla tweeted. This is the second time in one week he's tried to start a Twar with the White House.

Naturally, Twitter users called him out on his stance, which is odd considering he's the owner of the largest EV vehicle manufacturer in the world.

Musk followed up his original tweet with another, explaining his stance. "Obviously, this would negatively affect Tesla, but sustainable energy solutions cannot react instantaneously to make up for Russian oil & gas exports."

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This tweet can be seen as a direct criticism of President Biden, caught between a rock and a hard place. A bipartisan group of senators has already introduced a bill to cut ties with Russian oil, replacing it with increased output in the USA.

The White House seems to be reluctant to push the bill through, scared of making the price of gas even higher. This approach does not appear to be working, as the gas price has gone above $4 per gallon for the first time in over a decade.

The current record gas price dates back to July 2008, when the average gas price hit $4.11 per gallon. Various experts think that the existing record could be broken sometime this week.

General Motors General Motors General Motors

Elon Musk is the most high-profile backer of the move to increase oil output in the US as soon as possible. The USA could also limit future increases by importing from Canada and supplies from other US allies. And he's 100% correct that new energy solutions aren't a viable solution out of the current price increase crisis.

That would require a widescale adoption of EVs, which simply isn't feasible. That would require millions of people giving up their F-150s for an F-150 Lightning. Apart from Ford not having the capacity to build that many cars, American consumers are still skeptical about electric vehicles. We use the F-150 as an example because it's America's best-selling vehicle. Last year, 726,004 F-150s were sold locally.

The Tesla Model Y is currently the best-selling EV in the USA, having sold 186,575 units in 2021. That's still some way off the Toyota RAV4, which sold 407,739.

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Driving Front Angle Ford 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Side View Driving Ford 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Trunk Space Ford
2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Driving Front Angle
2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Side View Driving
2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Trunk Space

For the record, Russia currently produces 10% of global crude oil and is second only to Saudi Arabia. That's roughly four to five million barrels of crude oil per day, of which the USA imports approximately 20.4 million barrels per month. According to the Energy Information Administration, that's roughly eight percent of the USA's liquid fuel imports.

The proposed ban on Russian oil has received support from both sides of the political spectrum.

"I don't believe this country should be importing anything from Russia," said Jon Tester, a Democrat from oil-producing Montana who supports the bill. "It will send even a bigger message that the United States is in this with Ukrainians for the long haul."

2016-2020 Tesla Model X P100D Rear Angle View Tesla Tesla 2020-2022 Tesla Model Y Forward View Tesla
2016-2020 Tesla Model X P100D Rear Angle View
2020-2022 Tesla Model Y Forward View
Source Credits: Reuters

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