Educational /Awareness article

Petroleum, along with oil and coal, is classified as a fossil fuel. Fossil fuels are formed when sea plants and animals die, and the remains become buried under several thousand feet of silt, sand or mud. Fossil fuels take millions of years to form and therefore petroleum is also considered to be a non-renewable energy source. Petroleum is formed by hydrocarbons (a hydrocarbon is a compound made up of carbon and hydrogen) with the addition of certain other substances, primarily sulfur. Petroleum in its natural form when first collected is usually named crude oil, and can be clear, green or black and may be either thin like gasoline or thick like tar. Originally the primary use of petroleum was as a lighting fuel, once it had been distilled and turned into kerosene. When Edison opened the world’s first electricity generating plant in 1882 the demand for kerosene began to drop. World War I was the real catalyst for petroleum production, with more petroleum being produced throughout the war than had ever been produced previously. In modern times petroleum is viewed as a valuable commodity, traded around the world in the same way as gold and diamonds. Most people tend to believe that petroleum is mostly used to power internal combustion engines in the form of gasoline or petrol. Although our automobiles and other forms of transport do consume the highest quantity of petroleum it is used for a vast array of applications. In its thickest form, the almost black petroleum is named bitumen, this is used for paving road, forming the blacktop, it is also excellent water repellent and is used in roofing. Petroleum is also a major part of the chemical makeup of many plastics and synthetics. Possibly the most startling usage of petroleum for many people is its appearance in foodstuffs such as beer and in medications such as aspirin. The world has a limited supply of petroleum, and current estimations tell us that within the next few decades mankind will have completely depleted this valuable natural resource. Although measures have been taken to ensure that there are cheap, renewable fuel options in place for the eventuality it is still obvious that mankind faces a serious problem when petroleum supplies finally run out.

Top uses of Petrol

• BUNKER FUEL Bunker fuel, which is also known as heavy oil, is used to power ships. It typically contains a high number of pollutants and contaminants. Use is increasing with the shipping associated with global commerce.
• DETERGENT All soap less detergents used to wash clothes and dishes are derived from the petrochemical glycerin.
• PLASTICS All plastic, unless it is “bioplastic”, is made from petrochemicals. Every product made from or containing plastic is a product that exists only through the distillation of petroleum.
• JET FUEL The standard type of jet fuel, Jet A, is a petroleum product with a number of additives to prevent sparking, gumming, corrosion, and icing.
• DIESEL FUEL Diesel, unless it is “biodiesel”, is made from refining crude oil. It is generally used in medium- and heavy-duty vehicles requiring a great deal of power and torque, like garbage trucks, road equipment, buses, and trains.
• HEATING OIL - Heating oil is a petroleum product used to fuel furnaces or boilers. In the U.S., most heating oil is consumed in the northeast.
• SYNTHETIC RUBBER- Synthetic rubber is used for car tires and rubber soles on shoes. The demand for synthetic rubber is four times greater than that for natural rubber.
• SYNTHETIC FIBERS- Polyester, nylon, and acrylic are all derived from petrochemicals. They are used for curtains, carpets, rope and even our everyday clothing.
• FERTILIZERS & PESTICIDES- All major commercial fertilizers are ammonia based, made from natural gas, and most commercial pesticides come from oil.
• PAINT -Plastic and oil based paints, as well as paint additives, are manufactured from petrochemicals.
• GASOLINE- Gasoline is the most commonly used product by Americans for their day to day transportation needs. 45% of all oil used in the U.S. goes to gasoline, which means we consume in excess of 180 million gallons of gasoline a day.
• PHOTOGRAPHIC FILM – Petrochemical ethylene is what is used in photographic film.
• FOOD ADDITIVES – The shelf life of canned foods can be increased by food additives, derived from petrochemicals.
• MAKE UP – Make-up’s that contain oils, perfumes, waxes and color, are derived from petrochemicals.
• MEDICINE – Acetylsalicylic acid (ASA), the active ingredient in many pain reliever medicines, is manufactured from petrochemicals.
• CANDLES – Wax is a raw petroleum product.


The less Sulphur, the better, 0.05% is the super quality for vehicles, etc., while other qualities are for generators, power plants, etc.