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Map: The Countries With the Most Oil Reserves

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Map: The Countries With the Most Oil Reserves

Map: The Countries With the Most Oil Reserves

There’s little doubt that renewable energy sources will play a strategic role in powering the global economy of the future.

But for now, crude oil is still the undisputed heavyweight champion of the energy world.

In 2018, we consumed more oil than any prior year in history – about 99.3 million barrels per day on a global basis. This number is projected to rise again in 2019 to 100.8 million barrels per day.

The Most Oil Reserves by Country

Given that oil will continue to be dominant in the energy mix for the short and medium term, which countries hold the most oil reserves?

Today’s map comes from HowMuch.net and it uses data from the CIA World Factbook to resize countries based on the amount of oil reserves they hold.

Here’s the data for the top 15 countries below:

RankCountryOil Reserves (Barrels)
#1๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ช Venezuela300.9 billion
#2๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Saudi Arabia266.5 billion
#3๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Canada169.7 billion
#4๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ท Iran158.4 billion
#5๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ถ Iraq142.5 billion
#6๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ผ Kuwait101.5 billion
#7๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ช United Arab Emirates97.8 billion
#8๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡บ Russia80.0 billion
#9๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡พ Libya48.4 billion
#10๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Nigeria37.1 billion
#11๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ United States36.5 billion
#12๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ฟ Kazakhstan30.0 billion
#13๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ณ China25.6 billion
#14๐Ÿ‡ถ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Qatar25.2 billion
#15๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ท Brazil12.7 billion

Venezuela tops the list with 300.9 billion barrels of oil in reserve – but even this vast wealth in natural resources has not been enough to save the country from its recent economic and humanitarian crisis.

Saudi Arabia, a country known for its oil dominance, takes the #2 spot with 266.5 billion barrels of oil. Meanwhile, Canada and the U.S. are found at the #3 (169.7 billion bbls) and the #11 (36.5 billion bbls) spots respectively.

The Cost of Production

While having an endowment of billions of barrels of oil within your borders can be a strategic gift from mother nature, it’s worth mentioning that reserves are just one factor in assessing the potential value of this crucial resource.

In Saudi Arabia, for example, the production cost of oil is roughly $3.00 per barrel, which makes black gold strategic to produce at almost any possible price.

Other countries are not so lucky:

CountryProduction cost (bbl)Total cost (bbl)*
๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง United Kingdom$17.36$44.33
๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ท Brazil$9.45$34.99
๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Nigeria$8.81$28.99
๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ช Venezuela$7.94$27.62
๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Canada$11.56$26.64
๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ U.S. shale$5.85$23.35
๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ด Norway$4.24$21.31
๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ U.S. non-shale$5.15$20.99
๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ฉ Indonesia$6.87$19.71
๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡บ Russia$2.98$19.21
๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ถ Iraq$2.16$10.57
๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ท Iran$1.94$9.09
๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Saudi Arabia$3.00$8.98
*Total cost (bbl) includes production cost (also shown), capital spending, gross taxes, and admin/transport costs.

Even if a country is blessed with some of the most oil reserves in the world, it may not be able to produce and sell that oil to maximize the potential benefit.

Countries like Canada and Venezuela are hindered by geology – in these places, the majority of oil is extra heavy crude or bitumen (oil sands), and these types of oil are simply more difficult and costly to extract.

In other places, obstacles are are self-imposed. In some countries, like Brazil and the U.S., there are higher taxes on oil production, which raises the total cost per barrel.

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Economy

Ranked: Countries with the Most Sustainable Energy Policies

Which countries are able to balance prosperity and sustainability in their energy mixes? See the countries with the most sustainable energy policies.

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strongest energy policies index

Ranked: Countries With Most Sustainable Energy Policies

The sourcing and distribution of energy is one of the most pressing issues of our time.

Just under one billion people still lack basic access to electricity, and many more connect to the grid through improvised wiring or live through frequent blackouts. On the flip side of the socioeconomic spectrum, a growing chorus of voices is pressuring governments and corporations to power the global economy in a more sustainable way.

Today’s visualization โ€“ using data from the World Energy Council (WEC) โ€“ ranks countries based on their mix of policies for tackling issues like energy security and environmental sustainability.

The Energy Trilemma Index

According to WEC, there are three primary policy areas that form the “trilemma”:

1. Energy Security
A nationโ€™s capacity to meet current and future energy demand reliably, and bounce back swiftly from system shocks with minimal disruption to supply. This dimension covers the effectiveness of management of domestic and external energy sources, as well as the reliability and resilience of energy infrastructure.

2. Energy Equity
A countryโ€™s ability to provide universal access to reliable, affordable, and abundant energy for domestic and commercial use. This dimension captures basic access to electricity and clean cooking fuels and technologies, access to prosperity-enabling levels of energy consumption, and affordability of electricity, gas, and fuel.

3. Environmental Sustainability
The transition of a countryโ€™s energy system towards mitigating and avoiding environmental harm and climate change impacts. This dimension focuses on productivity and efficiency of generation, transmission and distribution, decarbonization, and air quality.

Using the dimensions above, a score out of 100 is generated. Here’s a complete ranking that shows which countries have the most sustainable energy policies:

RankCountryTrilemma ScoreLetter Grade*
1๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ญ Switzerland85.8AAA
2๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ช Sweden85.2AAA
3๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฐ Denmark84.7AAA
4๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง United Kingdom81.5AAA
5๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Finland81.1AAA
6๐Ÿ‡ซ๐Ÿ‡ท France80.8AAA
7๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡น Austria80.7AAA
8๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡บ Luxembourg80.4BAA
9๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ช Germany79.4AAA
10๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฟ New Zealand79.4AAA
11๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ด Norway79.3CAA
12๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Slovenia79.2AAA
13๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Canada78.0AAC
14๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Netherlands77.8BAB
15๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ United States77.5AAB
16๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฟ Czech Republic77.4AAB
17๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡พ Uruguay77.2ABA
18๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ธ Spain77.0BAA
19๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡บ Hungary76.8AAB
20๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡น Italy76.8BAA
21๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ธ Iceland76.2BAB
22๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ป Latvia76.1ABA
23๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฐ Slovakia75.6ABA
24๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ช Belgium75.2BAA
25๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ช Ireland75.2CAA
26๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡ด Romania75.1ABA
27๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡ท Croatia74.9ABA
28๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡บ Australia74.7BAB
29๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡น Portugal74.0BBB
30๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ช Estonia73.8BAB
31๐Ÿ‡ฏ๐Ÿ‡ต Japan73.8CAB
32๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Israel73.3CAB
33๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡น Malta72.9DAA
34๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡ฐ Hong Kong (China)72.5DAB
35๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ท Argentina72.4BAB
36๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡น Lithuania72.4CBA
37๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ท South Korea71.7BAC
38๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ท Costa Rica71.6CBA
39๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ท Brazil71.6ABA
40๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฝ Mexico71.3ABB
41๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฌ Bulgaria71.3BBB
42๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡บ Russia71.2AAC
43๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Singapore71.2DAB
44๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ช Venezuela70.3ABB
45๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡จ Ecuador69.6ABB
46๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฆ Panama69.5CBA
47๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ท Greece69.5CBA
48๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Chile69.4BBB
49๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ด Colombia69.3BCA
50๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡บ Mauritius69.0CBB
51๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡พ Malaysia68.5BBC
52๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ช U.A.E.68.3BAD
53๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฑ Poland68.3BBB
54๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡พ Cyprus67.9DBB
55๐Ÿ‡ถ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Qatar67.9AAD
56๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ณ Brunei67.7CBC
57๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ฟ Azerbaijan67.7BBB
58๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ช Peru66.8ACB
59๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ฟ Kazakhstan66.6BBC
60๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ฒ Armenia66.3CBB
61๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Ukraine66.0ACC
62๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ป El Salvador66.0BCA
63๐Ÿ‡ด๐Ÿ‡ฒ Oman65.5BAD
64๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ช Montenegro65.4CBB
65๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ผ Kuwait65.2CAD
66๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ท Turkey64.9CBC
67๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡พ Paraguay64.7DBA
68๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ญ Thailand64.6CBC
69๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ฉ Indonesia64.1BCC
70๐Ÿ‡ท๐Ÿ‡ธ Serbia63.8BBC
71๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฐ North Macedonia63.7CBC
72๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ณ China63.7BBD
73๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ฑ Albania63.7DBA
74๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ท Iran63.6ABD
75๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ณ Tunisia63.6BBC
76๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡น Trinidad and Tobago63.3CAD
77๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ช Georgia63.1CBC
78๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Saudi Arabia62.8CAD
79๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฆ Bosnia and Herz.62.1BBC
80๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ญ Bahrain62.1BAD
81๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ง Lebanon61.6DAC
82๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ฟ Algeria61.3CBD
83๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Morocco61.1CCC
84๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ด Bolivia60.4BCC
85๐Ÿ‡ฑ๐Ÿ‡ฐ Sri Lanka60.1BCB
86๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ด Angola60.0ADB
87๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ฌ Egypt59.9BBD
88๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡น Guatemala59.7BCC
89๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Gabon59.5CBD
90๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฆ Namibia59.1CDA
91๐Ÿ‡ป๐Ÿ‡ณ Vietnam58.9ACD
92๐Ÿ‡ฟ๐Ÿ‡ฆ South Africa58.9DBD
93๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ถ Iraq58.9BBD
94๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ญ Philippines58.6BCC
95๐Ÿ‡ฏ๐Ÿ‡ด Jordan58.5DBC
96๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ผ Botswana57.7DCC
97๐Ÿ‡ฉ๐Ÿ‡ด Dominican Republic57.6DBB
98๐Ÿ‡ฏ๐Ÿ‡ฒ Jamaica56.9DBC
99๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฏ Tajikistan55.7DCC
100๐Ÿ‡ญ๐Ÿ‡ณ Honduras55.3DCC
101๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ฟ Eswatini55.1DCC
102๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Nicaragua54.5DCC
103๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ญ Ghana52.9CDC
104๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฒ Myanmar51.9BDB
105๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ญ Cambodia51.6CDC
106๐Ÿ‡ฐ๐Ÿ‡ช Kenya51.3BDB
107๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฉ Moldova51.2DCD
108๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ณ Mongolia51.1DCD
109๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ณ India50.3BDD
110๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡ฐ Pakistan49.6CDD
111๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฎ Cรดte dโ€™Ivoire49.3BDC
112๐Ÿ‡ฟ๐Ÿ‡ฒ Zambia47.8CDB
113๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฒ Cameroon47.4BDD
114๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฉ Bangladesh47.1DDC
115๐Ÿ‡ฟ๐Ÿ‡ผ Zimbabwe46.0CDC
116๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ท Mauritania45.6BDD
117๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ต Nepal44.3DDC
118๐Ÿ‡ธ๐Ÿ‡ณ Senegal43.4DDD
119๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฟ Tanzania42.5DDC
120๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡น Ethiopia42.3DDC
121๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Madagascar42.2CDC
122๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ฟ Mozambique41.4DDC
123๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ฌ Nigeria40.7BDD
124๐Ÿ‡ฒ๐Ÿ‡ผ Malawi39.1DDB
125๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡ฏ Benin36.3DDD
126๐Ÿ‡น๐Ÿ‡ฉ Chad33.8DDD
127๐Ÿ‡จ๐Ÿ‡ฉ D.R.C.33.8DDC
128๐Ÿ‡ณ๐Ÿ‡ช Niger30.0DDD

*The letter grade represents national performance in three dimensions. The first letter represents Security, the second letter represents Equity, the third letter represents the Environmental Sustainability. The top grade is AAA, the lowest is DDD.

Highs, Lows, and Outliers

Every country has unique circumstances โ€” from strategic energy reserves to green energy ambitions โ€” that shape their domestic energy policies. Let’s take a closer look at some of the more interesting situations around the world.

Sweden

sweden energy trilemma index

Qatar

qatar energy trilemma index

Singapore

singapore energy trilemma index

Dominican Republic

dominican republic energy trilemma index

Niger

niger energy trilemma index

Global Energy Outlook

Achieving the balance of prosperity and sustainability is a goal of nearly every country, but it takes stability and the right mix of policies to get the job done.

The fact that many trilemma scores are improving is an indicator that the world’s patchwork of energy policies are slowly moving in the right direction.

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Energy

Ranked: The World’s Largest Energy Sources

As global population grows, our energy demand grows as well. Here are the largest energy sources in the world and how much electricity they generate.

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The World’s Largest and Most Notable Energy Sources

Every day, humans consume roughly 63,300,000 megawatt-hours (MWh) of electricity to power our homes, workplaces, and vehiclesโ”€about the same produced by over 5,700 Hoover Dams.

While present-day electricity generation is slanted heavily in favor of coal and gas on a global basis, renewable sources have started to gain ground.

Todayโ€™s graphic from Information is Beautiful lists the worldโ€™s largest energy sources and their energy outputs. These power plants are ranked using the daily megawatt-hour (MWh), the amount of energy a power source generates in a day.

Relying on Renewables

Located in the United Kingdom, Drax Power Station is the worldโ€™s largest biomass plant, powered chiefly by burning wood. Originally a coal-fired plant, Drax is expected to fully phase out coal by the year 2025.

Meanwhile, Tengger Desert Solar Park in China was the biggest solar operation until 2018, but it has since been displaced by the Shakti Sthala plant in India. The latter uses only solar panelsโ”€no mirrorsโ”€to generate energy from the sun.

Overall, solar photovoltaics have experienced the highest growth of all energy source segments, showing 31% annual growthโ”€nearly triple the rate of wind power according to the International Energy Association (IEA).

Untapped Potential?

Currently, 27% of the worldโ€™s power comes from renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, hydro, biomass, and other similar resources.

However, according to back-of-the-envelope calculations, the potential for renewables is far beyond existing generation capacity. In fact, humans are just using 0.81% of solar’s potential generation capacity, and 0.57% of the potential from wind.

 WindSolarHydroGeothermal
Potential Energy Generation Capacity480,000,000 MWh401,850,000 MWh86,400,000 MWh48,767,123 MWh
Energy Generated (Current)3,884,983 MWh2,304,000 MWh11,465,753 MWh201,761 MWh
% of Potential Used0.81%0.57%13.3%0.41%

Non-renewable Energy Sources

Nuclear power plants have perhaps the strongest stigma against themโ”€largely due to international disasters such as Chernobyl and Fukushima.

However, nuclear power plants are still the most efficient energy sources, sitting at over 90% average capacity.

The largest nuclear plant (by MW) in the world, Kashiwazaki-Kariwa, is currently shut down due to damage from a 2007 earthquake, and awaiting confirmation to restart operations. As a result, the Bruce Nuclear Generating Station in Canada now holds the title of the largest operating reactor in the world. The plant currently generates about 30% of Ontario’s power.

In 2018, coal is still being used to generate roughly 38% of the worldโ€™s total electricity, followed by natural gas with a 23% share.

The Future of Energy Potential

Fittingly, the graphic also shows daily energy outputs for Google and Bitcoin usage. This data helps remind us that our online activity also consumes energyโ”€something that will be top of mind as technology continues to advance and humans need to use more energy through our internet-enabled devices.

Understanding humanityโ€™s need for energy is a daunting endeavor, but itโ€™s critical to ensuring our planet has a sustainable source of energy for generations to come.

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