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1973 energy crisis

The energy crisis was a worldwide oil shortage which followed the Arab Oil Embargo[?] that began on October 17, 1973. Prices of other fuels, and electricity, were also affected.

The embargo began during the end of the Yom Kippur War between the Arab states and Israel. The Arabs were frustrated by their defeat and annoyed at the western support in money and materiel that had aided the Israelis. In response the states of OPEC declared an oil embargo on the west. This included many of the world's largest oil producers such as Saudi Arabia, Iraq, and Kuwait.

The crisis caused oil prices to quadruple, caused shortages and rising prices for gasoline (petrol), electricity, and other fuels. This resulted in an energy crisis of unprecendented proportions. And in many countries, governmental mandates for energy conservation[?]. The shortage mostly affected western Europe and the United States, other areas not being as dependent upon Middle Eastern Oil. The increase in the price of oil was devastating to the western economies leading to the crisis of stagflation. This was further exarcebated by government price controls[?] in the United States, which limited the price of "old oil" while allowing newly discovered oil to be sold at a higher price, resulting in a withdrawal of old oil from the market and artificial scarcity. The rule was intended to promote oil exploration[?]

In the Netherlands there was rationing of petrol.

The energy crisis led to greater interest in renewable fuels[?], especially wood heat and spurred research in solar power and wind power[?]. It also lead to greater pressure to exploit North American oil sources, and also increased the wests dependence on coal and nucelar power. It also led to a revolution in auto making where the large automobiles of the 1950s and 1960s were replaced by far more compact and energy efficient cars. The embargo also lead to the creation of the U.S.'s Strategic Petroleum Reserve.

The embargo was eventually ended after negotiatons at the Washington Conference[?].

See also



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