Where To Find Oil

Written by Tara Peris
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The question of where to find oil has been a pressing issue for scientists and politicians alike. As a natural resource that virtually dominates the modern landscape, there is no country not vigorously vying for increased oil access. With the best minds worldwide busily devoted to this task, it is quite clear that the issue of where to find oil will not be easily resolved. In fact, to successfully address the issue requires knowledge of basic science and a bit of history as well.

Petroleum geology is both a science and an art form, and it requires a great deal of patience. As oil is found in the miniscule spaces in between sedimentary rocks, scientists often describe it as being located in the pores of a rock. Shale is probably the most common rock form, compiling deep beneath the earth's surface.

Understanding Where to Find Oil

Although people often believe that crude oil exists in underground riverbeds, this is actually a source of misinformation. Millions of years ago, much of the sediment rock we see today was submerged under the ocean. As underwater plant and animal life died and decayed, it floated down to the floor of the ocean where it mixed with the sedimentary rock.

Although this water is long gone, sedimentary rock deposits of materials such as shale remain buried deep in the ground. The heat from the earth's surface serves to turn the decaying matter into the hydrocarbons we refer to as oil and gas. Then, the earth's pressure forces the oil and gas out of the rocks. The answer to the question of where to find oil is really a matter of finding these profitable rock resources and mining them successfully.


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