HKNIC - World energy resources
tc


World energy resources
The sustainability of an energy resource depends on how much is still available, and for how long. The availability of an energy resource is usually measured by two quantities. Its proven reserves represent the amount that can be extracted by the technology currently available under market conditions that prevail today. Resources represent the amount known to be available that could eventually become economic to extract with the further development of technology.

The situation is of particular relevance for non-renewable energy. Renewable energy is by definition sustainable, so that its use is largely limited by the cost of installing suitable equipment at available sites while balancing other needs such as other land use or preserving natural environment.
World energy resources
Non-renewable Energy Reserves and Resources at the end of 1993 (WEC 1995)
World energy resources
1 Toe is equivalent to 42 GJ [Ref: Energy, Electricity and Nuclear Power Estimates for the period up to 2030, IAEA, July 2004]
Notes to the table:
(1) Note breakdown for Oil:
World energy resources
(2) Only 0.7% of the natural uranium resources (U-235) are utilised in "thermal reactors." For a more complete use of the remaining uranium resources (U-238) and another fissionable material Thorium (Th-232) that is several times more abundant than uranium, it is necessary to use the available "fast neutron reactor" technology.
 
Both proven reserves and resources depend very much on market conditions, which drive prices and exploration efforts. An increase in demand for oil, for example, will make more oil becoming economical to extract and drive technological development for oil extraction, so increasing the amount of proven reserves. The demand increase will also drive oil exploration efforts so increasing both proven reserves and resources for oil, so long as they remain small compared to the quantity that is still unknown and left unexplored. Such has been the situation historically with oil and gas and despite occasional concerns over possible shortages, the amount of proven oil and gas reserves has been steadily increasing over the last two decades.
World "Conventional" Oil Proven reserves
World energy resources
World Gas Proven reserves

World energy resources  

Source: BP 2014