Authors: Skov, Arlie M.
The US economy and use of oil and gas energy grew rapidly together for many decades. This seemingly symbiotic relationship ended when nominal oil prices jumped eight-fold (1973-81), triggering the worst US recession since World War II. Subsequent recessions have followed every significant, if generally short-term, oil price hike. Economic growth has happened when oil prices were either relatively low or stable. The oil price jump of the '70s also correlates with a nine-fold increase in natural gas price, a four-fold increase in coal price, a three-fold increase in cost of electricity, and a significant drop in energy demand. These events provide bases for better understanding of the relationship between energy use and economic growth.