Forum - Results of a poll that sought to understand people’s “oil awareness.”
The Oil Dilemma
Oil is undoubtedly a lynchpin of the world’s economy. Oil is the world’s most widely used source of energy, accounting for 40% of global energy consumption and an astonishing 96% of the energy used in the transportation sector. Yet even if we were to remove all gasoline- and diesel-powered vehicles from the roads, we would still be dependent on this hydrocarbon.
One of the first applications of oil, dating back thousands of years, was as a medicine. Nowadays the most surprising uses include chewing gum, lipstick, and aspirin. Every barrel of crude oil holds remarkable potential: It helps keep us warm, helps keep us on the go, and provides the building blocks for countless products we take for granted. Plastics are a great example of this, with water bottles a notable illustration. Although there is a growing interest in the use of biomass as a feedstock, fossil fuels today form 99% of plastics’ raw material base.