Crude oil is a mineral consisting of a mixture of hydrocarbons of natural origin, ranging from yellow to black, and of variable density and viscosity. Crude oil is extracted and undergoes distillation to break down the liquid into various products.
Crude oil produces many beneficial products that have improved the quality of life for people around the world. The majority of crude oil produces gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, and heating oils. Heavier oil products are used to make asphalt and lubricating oils such as petroleum.
Crude oil is the main source of energy globally. In 2018, the world used approximately 99.3 million barrels of oil per day.
Oil reserves denote the amount of crude oil located in a particular region that can be recovered using current technological constraints and at a cost that is feasible at the current oil prices. Venezuela currently has the largest oil reserves in the world.
In 2018, the United States became the largest producer of crude oil, surpassing both Russia and Saudi Arabia, producing about 12.1 million barrels per day. Alaska, Texas, North Dakota, New Mexico, and Oklahoma are the largest oil-producing states in the U.S.
Global oil demand is expected to continue to decline in 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, constricting traveling and economic activity.
Oil Consumption by Country
There is an estimated 1.65 trillion barrels of proven oil reserves in the world as of 2016. It is estimated that the world consumes over 97 million barrels of oil per day. The world’s proven reserves are equivalent to about 46.6 times its annual consumption levels, meaning that the Earth has about 47 years of oil left at the current consumption levels.
The United States is both the largest producer of oil and the largest consumer. The United States consumes about 19.69 million barrels of oil per day, which is more than the entire European Union. This is about 20% of the world’s total oil consumption. This is followed by China, which consumes 11.75 million barrels of oil per day, accounting for about 12% of total consumption, and India, which consumes about 4.49 million barrels per day, accounting for about 4.6% of consumption.
The United States, China, and India alone account for over a third of the world’s total oil consumption. All three of these countries have the three largest populations in the world. Despite having the smallest population of the three, the United States has the highest consumption.
The top ten consumers of oil account for 60% of the world’s total oil consumption. These countries are:
- The United States
- Saudi Arabia
- South Korea
All other countries account for about 40% of the world’s total oil consumption.
Some of the smallest consumers of crude oil are Niue at 60 barrels per day, Saint Helena at 80 barrels per day, the Falkland Islands at 300 barrels per day, and Nauru and Kiribati, which both consume about 400 barrels per day. These nations have notably smaller populations and fewer vehicles and planes that require larger amounts of crude oil.