NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- I was talking with Jim Cramer today about the latest IEA report on oil production. Most media outlets centered on the headline that the U.S. would become the leader in global oil production by 2030.
But the idea of "Saudi America," a country that produces more than anyone else, really misses the point of the IEA report. More important is the correct recognition by the IEA of fast-increasing and almost equally fast-eroding oil shale plays, leaving a near-term future of U.S. independence, but ultimately returning dependence upon conventional Middle East sources for crude oil.
I asked Jim about the speed of development and erosion of oil shale resources, in light of the fascinating interview he did on "Mad Money" with EOG Resources (EOG) CEO Mark Papa last week.
What's clear is that there is no industry consensus on the long-term sustainability of shale oil growth. I am in agreement with the IEA here, and I think they are finally in front of the trend as opposed to being behind it: There is a shale oil surge going on here in the U.S., but it is not a revolution.
Indeed, the revolution is in shale gas -- we're not likely to run out of that anytime soon. As Jim points out in our discussion, and I agree with him, the U.S. will have to find a future in that fuel if we are not destined to again be hostage to Middle Eastern crude supplies.
I talk more about this with Jim in the video above.