For all the time we spend focusing on American oil, I think it’s time to take a look at our friends across the sea in Europe. After researching, it’s interesting to see how much they differ from us in imports, exports, production, and consumption.
In 2013, the European Union was the second-largest oil consuming region in the world. However, there’s been a downward trend in oil consumption since 2006, when the region consumed 16.5 million barrels of oil per day.
Let’s jump right in and compare the American oil industry to the European oil industry on a number of fronts.
The top three European oil companies are Royal Dutch Shell, BP, and Total who had a combined revenue of $699.8 billion in 2015. In America, the top three oil companies are Exxon-Mobil, Valero Energy, and Chevron, who had a combined revenue of $529.64 billion in the same year.
In 2015, America imported 9.4 million barrels of petroleum per day, which is about half of the oil we consume on a daily basis.
This is a different story in Europe. In 2013, the European Union imported 90 percent of its oil needs and two-thirds of its natural gas supply. It’s the world’s largest oil-importing region, getting most of its oil from Russia and Saudi Arabia.
Europe doesn’t produce much oil at all, hence their dependence on imports. Since the turn of the century, oil production decreased sharply in Europe. In fact, 2014 saw a 17.3 percent decrease in production compared to a decade earlier. Of all the EU members, France was the highest-producing member of oil, with a 17.6 percent share of the total.
The US, on the other hand, produces over 10 million barrels of crude oil per day.
While the EU’s oil industry isn’t as prosperous as other parts of the world, it makes up for it with more dependence on alternative fuels. For instance, nuclear energy and renewable energy make up 50 percent of the region’s energy consumption. However, despite their progress in renewables, they still remain very dependent on foreign oil for their energy needs.