La siempre infalible recuperación americana

VIENA – Como es habitual al comienzo de un nuevo año, se están pregonando a escala mundial estadísticas y pronósticos de tendencia imponentes. Por ejemplo, se espera que en 2016 China substituya a los Estados Unidos como mayor economía del mundo y, en 2040, la población de la India habrá alcanzado los 1.600 millones, con lo que superará la de China, que se habrá estancado un decenio antes.

Tal vez la proyección más asombrosa es la de que los Estados Unidos llegarán a ser exportadores de energía en 2020 y llegarán a tener autonomía energética quince años después, gracias a la abundancia del barato gas de esquisto de que disponen y al descubrimiento de enormes reservas de petróleo en toda la zona comprendida entre Dakota del Norte y el golfo de México. Pese a la oposición de grupos ecologistas, dichas reservas serán más fáciles de explotar que las de Europa, porque están situadas en gran medida en zonas escasamente pobladas.

A consecuencia de ello, la energía será en el futuro previsible mucho más barata en los EE.UU. que en Europa o en China. De hecho, la extracción del gas de esquisto es tan económicamente favorable, que incluso el gas americano exportado a Europa costaría 30 por ciento menos de lo que cobra actualmente la gigantesca empresa energética rusa Gazprom.

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