National Geographic : 1920 Feb
i I Ae^KI K^ir ENGLANDS DISCOVERY WELL Photograph from Arthur C. Veatch ENGLAND'S DISCOVERY WELL Located in Derbyshire by an American geologist, drilled by American engineers and skilled workmen, with American machinery and well supplies, this all-American well struck oil in England almost exactly 60 years after Drake discovered oil in Pennsylvania. control of an oil supply adequate for the nation's needs. John D. Northrop, in a review of the political and commercial control of the petroleum resources of the world, thus sums up the British position: "The strength of Great Britain's present position in the world's petroleum affairs lies in a strong governmental policy in the matter and in the wide scope of British petroleum investments, embracing practi cally every country of which petroleum is an important product and nearly every country of which it is a product of poten tial importance." Not only do the British oil companies rejoice in such suggestive names as "Brit ish Controlled Oilfields," but at the stock holders' meetings the policy is stated in plain language as providing the safeguard of a voting trust so that no financial con trol "can divert even a single barrel of oil from national or imperial require ments." It is easy to see that Great Britain's world-trade policy has given oil this "im perial" recognition; and when we picture the return of the American flag to the seven seas, we too must plan for an oil supply available wherever needed. Any nation which today aspires to a large part in world commerce imposes upon itself an oil problem, for the future freedom of both the sea and the air will be defined in terms of oil supply. AMERICAN SITIPS AND THEIR APPETITE FOR OIL The new demand of our shipping pro gram alone involves fuel oil in quantities equivalent to nearly one-half of the pres ent domestic output, and, unless there is some corresponding decrease in other de mands, this new requirement must be met with an increase in production of crude oil of nearly 200 million barrels. The United States shipping program further calls for a chain of oil stations en circling the globe. The Shipping Board has already announced that the first steps have been taken to establish fuel stations along the trade lanes as well as at the world's cross-roads, and thus to assure unrestricted operation of our ships in the world's trade.