BGR Bundesanstalt für Geowissenschaften und Rohstoffe

Crude Oil

The oil field Mittelplate in the tidal flat area of the German North SeaThe oil field Mittelplate in the tidal flat area of the German North Sea Source: RWE-Dea AG

With a proportion of around 32 per cent of primary energy consumption, crude oil is the most important fuel world-wide, and will also remain so in the foreseeable future.

Oil production around the world rose almost 1 % over the year to reach a new all-time high of almost 4.2 billion t, whilst oil consumption rose almost 2 % over the same time period to today's figure of 4.3 billion t. The remaining crude oil potential (reserves and resources) is therefore around 562 billion t. The volumes of non-conventional crude oil (bitumen, extra heavy oil and crude oil from tight rocks (tight oil and shale oil)) totalled around 228 billion t.

So far, more crude oil has been consumed worldwide (approx. 180 billion tonnes) than is currently classified as conventional reserves (171 billion tonnes).

Total crude oil potential: regional distribution  Total crude oil potential: regional distribution Source: BGR

Crude oil is the only non-renewable energy resource which will probably not be able to satisfy the rising demand in the next decades. Given the long lead time required for a major shift in the energy sector, it will be necessary to develop alternative energy systems in a timely fashion.

BGR gathers and evaluates all of the accessible information on the global distribution and availability of crude oil.

BGR explores the regional oil potential in sedimentary basins, as well as at continental margins, and develops new exploration methods or improves existing ones.

Further Informations on Energy Resources



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