Gas prices in the US have fallen to the lowest level in 100 days, and drivers have strong US energy production to thank. Analysts say the domestic oil boom is softening the impact that turmoil in Iraq and Ukraine would otherwise have on prices at the pump.
Americans across the country are weighing the benefits and downsides of increased domestic energy production, and the controversial new technologies that come with it. Increasingly, they're also debating who gets to decide when and where fracking happens, or if it takes place at all.
With US energy production booming, Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R) of Alaska is leading the charge to overturn a decades-old ban on US crude oil exports. Murkowski met with the Obama administration this week to discuss oil condensate exports and the prospect of further loosening the oil export ban.
European officials are using transatlantic trade talks to push for access to the US shale oil and gas boom, largely off-limits due to decades-old trade restrictions on US energy exports. Environmental groups and consumer advocates oppose lifting the ban on concerns it will raise domestic energy prices and contribute to climate change.
Researchers have presented an alternative nuclear reactor – one that floats on water. Although floating nuclear reactors at sea have some benefits, there are concerns with surrounding marine life and terrorism threats in the context of a post-Fukushima world.
Although North Dakota, Texas, and the Gulf of Mexico are known for producing much of the US's oil, other states are becoming bigger producers. Alaska and California are two states that are gaining footing in the oil industry.