Twenty-five years ago, the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries struck at the heart of the American economy with an embargo on oil exports to the United States. The resulting rise in energy prices sparked a round of inflation and stagnant economic growth that lasted more than a decade. A quarter-century later, gasoline prices are at an all-time low, new oil deposits have been discovered in the Caspian Sea region and OPEC appears to have lost its grip on global energy prices and production. But the good times for consumers will not last forever. In a matter of time the world's oil will run out, and it's far from certain there will be sufficient alternative energy sources.
(Photo Credit: Public Broadcasting Service)