Arab Oil Embargo

Gas Stations
Gas Lines

With the Yom Kippur War between Israel and Egypt and Syria taking place the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries called for an embargo on the United States as well as Canada, Japan, United Kingdom, and the Netherlands. The embargo created shortages of oil and increased the price of oil fro $3 a barrel to early $12 a barrel.


The use of oil as a weapon had been tried a number of times without much success. During the 1973 Yom Kippur War, the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries wanted to take action in support of Egypt in Syria. On October 16th the United States announced an arms lift to support Israel. The next day on October 17th OAPEC declared an oil embargo against the United States and Canada, Japan, the United Kingdom, and the Netherlands. They also cut production by 5%. The two actions caused the price of the oil to rise from $3 a barrel to $12 barrel. This translated into a rise in the pump from 38 cents a gallon to 54 cents a gallon, an increase of 42%.

The oil embargo also created shortages of gas, that resulted in some areas to being forced to fill your cars gas tank on alternate days. The embargo had a long-term impact on America energy policy. Cars slowly became more efficient, using less gasoline and a concerted effort began to try to wean America from Mid East oil.