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Data: Rystad Energy; Chart: Danielle Alberti/Axios

There's no doubt that President Trump and Joe Biden have hugely different energy policies, but the effect of a Biden win on U.S. oil production is less certain — at least in the near- and medium-term.

Driving the news: According to a Rystad Energy note published last week, there's no meaningful relationship between party control and domestic output, which is historically far more influenced by other forces.

The big question: How much will Biden's agenda, if he wins, affect how much U.S. output bounces back from the pandemic-fueled decline from record level production before the outbreak?

  • Biden is vowing to end new oil-and-gas leasing on federal lands and waters, impose new emissions regulations, boost EV deployment and more.
  • But he has not called for a ban on fracking that would block development on private lands at the heart of the (now stalled) U.S. boom.

What they're saying: "A potential fracking ban on federal acreage would hardly have any impact on nationwide oil and gas output in the medium term, given the already existing depth of low-cost inventory and activity migration," Rystad notes.

Go deeper: The oil stakes of Trump vs. Biden

Go deeper

Amy Harder, author of Generate
Dec 4, 2020 - Energy & Environment

Oil giant Occidental is betting on becoming a "carbon management company"

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

One of America's biggest oil producers, Occidental Petroleum, has a new term to describe how it hopes to evolve in response to climate change.

What they're saying: “Ultimately, I don’t know how many years from now, Occidental becomes a carbon management company and our oil and gas would be a support business unit for the management of that carbon," Occidental CEO Vicki Hollub told IHS Markit's Daniel Yergin in an interview.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Dec 4, 2020 - Energy & Environment

Global energy efficiency gains are stalling

Data: IEA; Chart: Axios Visuals

Improvements in energy efficiency on a global basis have slowed to their lowest level in a decade, the International Energy Agency said in a new analysis.

Why it matters: The slowdown is another headwind in the fight against climate change, the agency warned.

Progressives shift focus from Biden's Cabinet to his policy agenda

Joe Biden giving remarks in Wilmington, Del., last month. Photo: Roberto Schmidt/AFP via Getty Images

Some progressives tell Axios they believe the window for influencing President-elect Joe Biden’s Cabinet selections has closed, and they’re shifting focus to policy — hoping to shape Biden's agenda even before he’s sworn in.

Why it matters: The left wing of the party often draws attention for its protests, petitions and tweets, but this deliberate move reflects a determination to move beyond some fights they won't win to engage with Biden strategically, and over the long term.