PureInsight | April 28, 2003
[PureInsight.org] The price of oil keeps rising. People wonder how many years are left before the Earth’s petroleum supplies are used up by the world’s hundreds of millions of cars and thousands and thousands of airplanes. For example, a single Boeing 747 must be refilled with 85 tons of fuel oil every time it takes off, and the supersonic Concorde jet needs 96 tons. Today, electric cars have already begun to surface, but it doesn’t appear that we have electrical airplanes that can fly in the sky. The world’s daily consumption of crude oil has been increasing at an extremely astonishing pace. In 1996, it was over 70 million barrels per day. The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) estimates that in the year 2020, the world’s people will use 100 million of barrels every day (one barrel contains 159 liters or 42 gallons).
Yet, OPEC also estimates that, based on the existing amounts already extracted from wells, OPEC countries’ natural stores of petroleum can last for 80 years, and those of non-OPEC countries can possibly add on another 20 years. It seems there is plenty, despite the massive consumption.
Countries with the largest oil reserves, as verified by OPEC, are Saudi Arabia, with 261.4 billion barrels every year (approximately 29 billion of tons); Iraq, with 112 billion of barrels (12.4 billion of tons); the United Arab Emirates, with 97.8 billion of barrels (10.8 billion of tons); Kuwait, with 96.5 billions of barrels (10.8 billions of tons), and Iran, with 92.6 billions of barrels (10.3 billions of tons). These figures do not include oil reserves in non-OPEC nations, such as the USA, Russia, and China.
Today, scientists believe petroleum was created when prehistoric plants and animals decomposed under very high temperature and pressure. However, they haven’t figured out how many cycles of mass extermination of prehistoric creatures were needed to produce the great amounts of petroleum that we find today. Is petroleum the result solely of the decomposition of animal life?
We know that 70 percent of a human (or animal) body is water, which leaves 30 percent to decay upon death. According to recent theories, the only way petroleum can be formed is under the extreme temperature and pressure that exists deep in the Earth. The population of the world is currently seven billion. Suppose that each person is equal to 70 kilograms. If you add in the domestic animal population (wild animals are not excluded in this calculation), it is not difficult to calculate that the world’s population may produce about 300 million of tons of crude oil. However, OPEC’s data shows that the whole world consumes about 2.9 billion of tons of oil every year. In other words, 300 million tons would only be enough to last for one and a half months at the current level for oil consumption. Some people may argue that the reason the oil reserve on earth is so high is that the bodies of prehistoric animals were huge and there were many of them. But no matter how big dinosaurs were, their number on earth were limited by resources on earth. Some of the dinosaurs ate meat and some ate grasses. The later ones must have eaten massive amount of plants. We can estimate how much plants there were on earth by calculating the amount of coal reserves on earth. From there, we can use our computers to estimate how many dinosaurs once lived on earth. One can see easily that there is a major discrepancy between the amount of oil reserves on earth and the number of animals that have lived on earth.
In addition, to produce such great amounts of petroleum, on top of high temperature and pressure, large numbers of animals had to die at the same time. It is hard to have all three conditions existing at the same time. A new theory, which has won some acceptance in the scientific community, states that 65 million years ago an asteroid hit the Earth and cataclysmically destroyed the dinosaurs. Then how many such major catastrophes would be needed to produce a sufficient amount of petroleum to meet our needs today? From another angle, the age of the earth is said to be approximately 4.6 billion years. If catastrophes did indeed occur so frequently, human beings’ ancestors wouldn’t have the opportunity to go through evolution!
Then, what’s the truth about the origin of our lives?
Translated from: http://www.zhengjian.org/zj/articles/2003/3/28/20972.html