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our operationsan industry unlike any other: 5 facts about the energy sector

1 min read | august 26, 2022

Chevron workers are pictured in front of a rig at our Rockies Business Unit in Greeley, Colorado.

The energy sector is a fascinating space that plays an indispensable role in our society. Without it, the world might lack many of the modern amenities we enjoy today.

Here are five facts about the oil and gas industry, from crude oil’s humble beginnings in Mesopotamia to the conveniences it has brought the world since.

1. striking (black) gold

Oil production in the U.S. began in 1859 when businessman Edwin Drake became the first person to successfully drill for black gold. (The term was coined as a refence to oil’s color and value.)

  • It was around the time steam heating – which uses boilers to turn water into steam – became a popular way of keeping homes warm.
  • The discovery came two decades before Thomas Edison patented the light bulb in 1879.
  • Chevron’s 143-year history began when a group of explorers and merchants established the Pacific Coast Oil Company on September 10, 1879.

2. powering the nation

In 2021, more than 4 billion barrels of oil were produced in the U.S.

  • Chevron produced 858 million barrels of oil domestically last year.
  • More than 70% of U.S. oil produced last year came from five key states: Texas, New Mexico, North Dakota, Alaska and Colorado.
  • Our best-producing basin is the Permian in west Texas and southeast New Mexico, where we expect to reach 1 million barrels of oil-equivalent by 2025.

3. ancient roots

The energy sector has a deeper history on the global scale.

  • Oil was used by the Babylonians in Mesopotamia around 4000 B.C. to caulk ships, craft weapon handles and make jewelry.
  • Oil and gas were used in China about 2,000 years ago to produce heat.
  • The world’s first oil well was drilled by hand in Poland in 1854.

4. primary consumers

The world consumed more than 100 million barrels of oil per day in 2019.

  • The U.S. was the top oil consumer, making up about 20% of total consumption.

5. unexpected uses

In the U.S., the transportation sector is the industry that uses the most oil. That may seem obvious, but here are some unexpected products that use oil and gas for their creation and manufacturing:

  • Nearly every electronic device in use (including TVs, smartphones and computers)
  • Numerous personal care items (including deodorant, makeup and shampoo)
  • Artificial limbs
  • Clothing containing synthetic fibers

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