Trump touts US as net energy exporter – but he's a bit early

US President Donald Trump used his State of the Union address Tuesday night to tout "a revolution in American energy" that has made the US "a net exporter" – but some of his celebration might be premature.

Photo: Ritzau Scanpix/AP/Evan Vucci

Although the US briefly became a net petroleum exporter during one week last November, government analysts say it will be at least September 2020 before it claims that title on a steady basis, by shipping out more energy than it imports on an annual basis. The nation is already a net exporter of coal and natural gas.

Trump's brief salute to US fossil fuel dominance – one passing mention in a speech expected that lasted more than hour – also invoked a milestone that was partially achieved before he won the White House, under former President Barack Obama.

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