Oil is our planet's primary source of energy. The intricate dynamics of providing oil to all who need it is a hot topic of discussion among politicians, engineers, scientists, environmentalists and the citizens of the world. Oil has been used to provide various types of heat for thousands of years, but it's full potential wasn't realized until the nineteenth century. Is oil starting to be overrun by environmentalists? How long will current oil reserves last? Is oil currently the best and most efficient means of energy production? Should we worry about expanding oil production around the world? These questions and many more are dominating the conversations of energy producers and politicians worldwide. .
The oil we use today is a byproduct of ancient fossilized organic materials. Most oil deposits are found where ancient oceans, seas and lake beds existed. As material such as zooplankton, algae and other organic materials fell to the floor it was trapped under mud and sand. The speed at which the organic material covered the floor did not allow for its proper decomposition before it was covered with layers of sand or mud. Over time, the areas were buried under sedimentary rock, which caused extreme pressures and heat. This heat and pressure exerted as time passed developed the crude oils we see today. The quality and composition of the crude oil varies based upon the hydrocarbon makeup of the petroleum. Petroleum was first used to provide kerosene for lighting in the mid nineteenth century. Demand for the less expensive fuel quickly sored in the United States and around the world. This would only be the beginning of a rush in production to feed the demand for the fuel. With the further development of the internal combustion engine the rate of oil production sky rocketed. Access to oil began to dictate development in the modern world and for the first time oil producing facilities were seen as a major strategic asset.