What Are the Pros and Cons of Oil Energy?

Oil is an abundant and relatively inexpensive fuel used to power automobiles, airplanes and other forms of transportation, but it poses significant environmental threats as well. Oil is one of the most abundant sources of energy on earth: it is found across the world, including at on and offshore locations in the United States. It is cheap and easy to manage and transport but is also classified as a finite or nonrenewable energy source and may harm species and habitats in the event of oil spills.

Oil is credited with enabling the daily functioning of many parts of the economy. It is used to fuel the cars, buses and trains people use to commute to work and fuels ships and cargo planes that deliver packages and goods to consumers worldwide. Oil also creates jobs: the process of finding, extracting and selling oil requires human labor, and the oil industry employs laborers, salespeople and executives in oil companies large and small. Oil is a finite resource, meaning that its global supplies are not renewable. Oil spills also pose significant environmental threats to plants, animals and their environments and may be costly to clean up.