- Associated Press - Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Exxon says the energy renaissance in the U.S. has staying power and predicts that North America will become a net exporter of oil and gas by the middle of the next decade.

The oil and gas giant’s latest long-term energy outlook says the rapid growth of production in the U.S. and Canada will lead to more oil and gas being sent overseas.

Exxon Mobil Corp. also predicts that natural gas use will keep increasing, at the expense of coal. By 2040, natural gas will account for 30 percent of global electricity generation, compared with less than 25 percent today, Exxon says.

Oil and gas production in the U.S. has surged thanks to technologies like hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. That’s helped decrease the nation’s dependence on energy imports.

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