How Is Petroleum Used As An Energy Source?

How Is Petroleum Used As An Energy Source? – The Relationship Between Oil and Gas and the Environment in Historical Context Updated: 2018-06-01 Oil and the Environment, Part 1/24 By E. Allison and B. Mandler for AGI, 2018 Download Print 19th Century When it first happened promoted and used on an industrial scale, it had significant advantages over existing fuels. It is cleaner, easier to transport and more usable than coal or biomass (wood, waste, whale oil). Diesel and petrol have revolutionized the transport sector. Through advances in chemical engineering, oil and gas have provided raw materials for a wide variety of useful products, from plastics to fertilizers to pharmaceuticals. In the 20th century, oil and gas became essential resources for modern life. As oil and commodities, the diversity of oil and gas has contributed to unprecedented economic growth and improved the health of people around the world. Energy Sources Used in the United States, 1850-2016. “Alternative renewable energy” includes solar, wind and geothermal energy. Image source: American Geoscience Institute. Source: Energy Information Administration.4, 5 Despite rapid advances in renewable energy technology, oil and gas accounted for two-thirds of US energy consumption last year. In 20161 accounted for more than half of the world’s energy supply.2 Gas and gas production forecasts3 Developments in politics, technology and public opinion may change this trend, but oil and gas may play an important role in production and consumption for much of the 21st century Play Consumption of Energy in the United States and Around the World . How can risks to the environment and public health in the energy sector be minimized and a safe and sufficient energy supply ensured? In this series, 24 panels and case studies provide an overview of the many links between the oil and gas industry and the environment. (1) environmental and health issues associated with oil and natural gas exploration, production, refining and processing, and transportation; (2) some of the technologies, management practices, and principles that help solve these problems; Recent Developments The exploration, production and exploitation of oil and gas have changed dramatically since the beginning of the 21st century. The use of horizontal hydraulic wells to access previously uneconomic oil and gas deposits has led to unprecedented growth in oil and gas production. 7 This increase in production has led to a corresponding increase in oil and gas transportation, processing and refining, agricultural use and manufacturing, and energy exports. have arisen, new ones have also arisen. Hydraulic Fracturing (“Fracking”) – This technique of crushing rock to extract oil and gas has been used since the 1940s, but has been combined with horizontal drilling to extract oil and gas from shale. Hydraulic fracking has increased rapidly since 2005. The widespread use of hydraulic fracking has raised questions about the amount of water used in the process, which can compete with other freshwater requirements in some areas, and encouraged research into other fluids. Hydraulic fracturing has also brought the topic of groundwater protection into focus. This is partly because of concerns about the fracking process itself and partly because some hydraulic fracturing fluids use toxic chemicals. This adds a new element of concern to an age-old problem. Old or poorly constructed wells, whether damaged or not, can leak a variety of liquids if the concrete or steel parts of the well are damaged. Identifying the occurrence and causes of water pollution is an ongoing challenge for scientists, regulators and industry. Earthquakes – Many human activities can cause earthquakes, including generating geothermal energy, filling reservoirs behind dams, and extracting groundwater. 16,17 Oil and gas operations can generate earthquakes through two main processes: groundwater injection and hydraulic fracturing. The largest earthquakes from oil and gas operations are the result of injecting large volumes of oil and gas-derived wastewater (“produced water”) into the ground. Injected deep underground, it can increase seismic risk on existing faults. Hydraulic fractures rarely cause large earthquakes, but parts of the United States and Canada have experienced small but significant earthquakes.19 Some states, notably Oklahoma and Kansas, reported in 2015 that there had been a decrease in earthquakes due to the decline in oil. Production (20 Land Use – Advances in horizontal drilling have eliminated the need to place wells directly over the resource, allowing for open well locations). Horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing have limited previous activity Oil and gas activity has increased in many areas, including some areas where there was no natural gas production, leading to increased soil erosion in parts of the country. Methane Emissions – US Natural Gas Production The rapid growth in oil consumption has caused natural gas to supplant coal as the largest source of electricity in the United States.21 Combustion of natural gas emits less carbon dioxide than coal, so there is a significant shift from coal to natural gas. . Gas conversion has had a positive impact on the environment, although methane, which is a major component of natural gas, is a potent greenhouse gas that causes leaks in natural gas production and distribution. Better monitoring of methane emissions, targeted equipment repair and replacement, and emergency response can help reduce methane emissions. In the United States, California has a long history of producing heavy oil from the Kern River field, but the largest producers of heavy oil are Venezuela and Canada, where most oil production is a mixture of clay, sand, water, and thick oil bitumen. It comes from the oil sands (aka “tar sands”), and Canadian oil sands production has increased significantly since 2005. Deeper oil sands tend to heat the oil. .The flat sand is removed from the oil sands mining and then processed to extract the oil. resulting in air pollution associated with pollution in general. In particular, open pit mining of the oil sands creates additional environmental problems, including air and water quality hazards from dust and tailings ponds. Transportation and Combustion – The increased production and consumption of oil and gas requires improved transportation infrastructure. Approximately 90% of oil and refined products, especially all natural gas, are transported in millions of kilometers of mostly underground pipelines. Crude oil spills and refined products account for less than 0.001% of the total shipped, but that small percentage equates to millions of gallons per year. , which requires extensive and expensive cleaning operations. Offshore Drilling – Advances in offshore drilling technology have enabled the extraction of oil and gas from deep waters. These extreme conditions pose special technical and ecological challenges. For example, in 2010 a failed well at Macondo Lookout in the Gulf of Mexico caused the largest offshore oil spill in history, killing 11 workers. Since that spill, significant changes have been made to regulations and industry practices to mitigate the environmental risks of offshore oil and gas exploration, but many concerns remain. Schematic representation of different types of oil and gas reserves. Recent advances in directional drilling (especially horizontal) and hydraulic fracturing have greatly increased production from shale and sand oil and gas. Photo Credit: US Environmental Protection Agency.15 Climate Change Warning Burning fossil fuels (coal, oil and natural gas) releases carbon dioxide (and other greenhouse gases) into space. Ecological damage. The magnitude of these impacts is not yet known, but they include global warming, ocean acidification, sea level rise and various other climate impacts, weather, natural disasters and agriculture, many of which are likely to increase. Future.10, 11, 12

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