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What Countries Consume the Most Oil?

The thirst for oil is unquenchable in countries like the United States, China, and India, where industrial might, burgeoning populations, and expanding economies drive an insatiable demand. These nations lead global consumption, shaping energy markets and geopolitical landscapes. Curious about how this affects you and the planet? Let's delve deeper into the world's oil dynamics. Continue reading to explore the ripple effects.
L. S. Wynn
L. S. Wynn
L. S. Wynn
L. S. Wynn

Oil is perhaps the most critical source of energy worldwide. Overall consumption is on the rise as more and more of the world industrialize and start utilizing modern machines. The United States is the largest consumer of oil; the European Union is next, with 13,630,000 barrels per day consumed, but it is not included on this chart because it is not a single country.

Here are the top 25 oil consuming nations as provided by the CIA World Factbook (2009/2010 estimates); the values represent the number of barrels consumed per day.

country barrels/day
United States 18,690,000 United States oil consumption
China 8,200,000 China oil consumption
Japan 4,363,000 Japan oil consumption
India 2,980,000 India oil consumption
Russia 2,740,000 Russia oil consumption
Brazil 2,460,000 Brazil oil consumption
Germany 2,437,000 Germany oil consumption
Saudi Arabia 2,430,000 Saudi Arabia oil consumption
South Korea 2,185,000 South Korea oil consumption
Canada 2,151,000 Canada oil consumption
Mexico 2,078,000 Mexico oil consumption
France 1,875,000 France oil consumption
Iran 1,809,000 Iran oil consumption
United Kingdom 1,669,000 United Kingdom oil consumption
Italy 1,537,000 Italy oil consumption
Spain 1,482,000 Spain oil consumption
Indonesia 1,115,000 Indonesia oil consumption
Australia 946,300 Australia oil consumption
Singapore 927,000 Singapore oil consumption
Netherlands 922,800 Netherlands oil consumption
Taiwan 834,000 Taiwan oil consumption
Venezuela 740,000 Venezuela oil consumption
Iraq 687,000 Iraq oil consumption
Egypt 683,000 Egypt oil consumption
Argentina 622,000 Argentina oil consumption

Frequently Asked Questions

Which country is the largest consumer of oil?

A map of China, the second country in oil consumption.
A map of China, the second country in oil consumption.

The United States holds the title for the largest consumer of oil, using about 20% of the world's oil. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), in 2020, the U.S. consumed approximately 18.12 million barrels per day. This high consumption is attributed to its large economy, extensive transportation sector, and industrial infrastructure.

How does China's oil consumption compare to that of the United States?

Japan ranks third in oil consumption.
Japan ranks third in oil consumption.

China is the second-largest consumer of oil after the United States. As per the EIA, China's consumption was about 14 million barrels per day in 2020. While China's economy continues to grow rapidly, leading to increased oil demand, it still consumes less than the U.S., partly due to its investments in renewable energy and public transportation.

What are the top five oil-consuming countries?

An offshore oil platform.
An offshore oil platform.

The top five oil-consuming countries are the United States, China, India, Japan, and Russia. These countries lead in oil consumption due to their large populations, industrial activities, and transportation needs. Together, they account for a significant portion of global oil demand, with the U.S. and China alone consuming over a third of the world's oil supply.

How has India's oil consumption changed in recent years?

Mexico ranks 11th in oil consumption in the world, using more than two million barrels per day.
Mexico ranks 11th in oil consumption in the world, using more than two million barrels per day.

India's oil consumption has been on a steady rise, making it the third-largest oil consumer globally. The country's expanding economy, growing middle class, and increasing vehicle ownership have driven this surge in demand. According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), India's oil consumption grew by an average of 4.1% per year over the last decade.

What impact does the oil consumption of these countries have on the global market?

Singapore is one of the 20 biggest oil consumers in the world.
Singapore is one of the 20 biggest oil consumers in the world.

The oil consumption patterns of the largest users significantly influence the global oil market. High demand from these countries can drive up oil prices and affect global supply. Conversely, a decrease in consumption, like during the 2020 pandemic, can lead to a surplus and falling prices. These countries' energy policies and shifts towards renewable sources also shape the future of the oil industry.

Are there any significant trends in oil consumption among the top consumers?

Canada ranks 10th worldwide in the consumption of oil.
Canada ranks 10th worldwide in the consumption of oil.

Among the top oil consumers, there is a trend towards diversifying energy sources and improving energy efficiency. For instance, the U.S. and China are investing in electric vehicles and renewable energy. Additionally, technological advancements and environmental concerns are prompting these countries to seek alternatives to oil, potentially leading to a plateau or decline in oil consumption in the future.

How do geopolitical events in oil-consuming countries affect the oil market?

Brazil ranks sixth in the world in oil consumption.
Brazil ranks sixth in the world in oil consumption.

Geopolitical events in major oil-consuming countries can have immediate and profound effects on the oil market. For example, trade disputes, sanctions, or military conflicts can disrupt supply chains and alter consumption patterns, leading to volatility in oil prices. The oil market is sensitive to such events due to the strategic importance of oil in the global economy and national security.

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Discussion Comments

felixmtt

The United States is the world's biggest oil consumer, followed by China, Japan and India. The 10 biggest oil consuming nations account for more than 58 percent of the world's total oil consumption per day.

gravois

Seeing these numbers reminds me of a very sobering fact I heard one time. There has been a lot of talk over the last decade or so of drilling for oil in the Arctic wilderness in Alaska. This is one of the largest pieces of undeveloped land anywhere in the world. Largely barren, sure, but still untouched by man.

They estimate that there are a billion barrels of oil in this part of the world. At first that sounds like a ton, but when you realize that the US goes through almost 20 million barrels a day you realize that drilling in Alaska would supply us with oil for 50 days, less than 2 months. Seems like a high price to pay to ruin one of the last unruined places on earth.

anon278345

Aspirin is not an oil byproduct. Most aspirin have four ingredients: the active ingredient (acetylsalicylic acid), corn starch, water and a lubricant. Possible lubricants include: hydrogenated vegetable oil, stearic acid, talc, or aluminum stearate. They are used to keep pills from sticking to the machines that press the mixture of ingredients into hard tablets/pills.

As for the USA oil consumption, and China surpassing us, what percentage of the oil used in China is used to make products for the US? I wish we would at least start using solar power more often and take away the tax payers money going into the oil companies pockets on top of all the profit they make of us. Put that taxpayer money toward building the infrastructure for renewable energy!

anon187903

britain uses the most oil in the world, not america.

yumdelish

Until a couple of years ago I hadn't given a second thought to the term 'carbon footprint'. Then I became a parent and everything changed. Once you have this real life investment in the future it's hard to not worry about what is going to be left of the world for your kids to enjoy.

There are many things we can do as individuals to reduce personal oil consumption. I don't buy plastic shopping bags, refuse to use aspirin (which is made from oil byproducts), and use natural rememdies for pest control.

It's easy to think we can't make any impact on change, but even a few small things can reduce oil consumption in the US, or any other country.

anon152079

China passed the US in Oil consumption by 4 percent last year. An Article by WSJ from a report of the International Energy Agency indicates that China will continue to grow it's usage substantially every year.

anon147797

@anon22233: Major suppliers are Canada and Venezuela. The

rest are from saudi arabia.

sintel7

I used to ride my bike everywhere to save money and cut down on pollution until a careless driver ran me down. Five bicycle riders were killed in our city that one summer alone. It's almost like oil companies have their own hit men on the roads. And Secretaries of State will give a driver's license to just about anyone anymore.

The number of cars on the road have tripled since I was a kid. It's ridiculous, and something's got to give.

I say shame on our government for lying in bed with Big Oil. The chart above should make any American sick and shameful just looking at it. It proves how greedy and uncaring they really are about the environment.

Our poor mother Earth being destroyed by way too many pollutants. I hope someday she gets her revenge. And when someone even tries to do something good like ride a bike, some king of the road jerk comes along and runs you over.

anon22233

Where does the United States get its oil from?

lemmings

The fact that the US has lousy public transit systems and that it is not very safe to ride your bike in most US cities might have something to do with these ridiculous statistics! I live in the United States and would give up my car in a second if my city had anything resembling good public transportation or if I could ride my bike without getting killed. It's really sad that even though gas is expensive, traffic is horrible, our cars are polluting... we're still in them!

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    • A map of China, the second country in oil consumption.
      By: pavalena
      A map of China, the second country in oil consumption.
    • Japan ranks third in oil consumption.
      By: Pontus Edenberg
      Japan ranks third in oil consumption.
    • An offshore oil platform.
      By: eyeidea
      An offshore oil platform.
    • Mexico ranks 11th in oil consumption in the world, using more than two million barrels per day.
      By: Stocksnapper
      Mexico ranks 11th in oil consumption in the world, using more than two million barrels per day.
    • Singapore is one of the 20 biggest oil consumers in the world.
      By: syphrix
      Singapore is one of the 20 biggest oil consumers in the world.
    • Canada ranks 10th worldwide in the consumption of oil.
      By: Anna
      Canada ranks 10th worldwide in the consumption of oil.
    • Brazil ranks sixth in the world in oil consumption.
      By: Bastos
      Brazil ranks sixth in the world in oil consumption.
    • Spain is one of the top 20 consumers of oil in the world.
      By: believeinme33
      Spain is one of the top 20 consumers of oil in the world.
    • Germany ranks seventh in the world in per capita oil consumption.
      By: believeinme33
      Germany ranks seventh in the world in per capita oil consumption.
    • South Korea is one of the top 10 consumers of oil.
      By: SeanPavonePhoto
      South Korea is one of the top 10 consumers of oil.
    • India's is one of the highest consumers of oil in the world.
      By: Tupungato
      India's is one of the highest consumers of oil in the world.
    • Egypt is among the 25 biggest consumers of oil.
      By: Pius Lee
      Egypt is among the 25 biggest consumers of oil.
    • The U.S. is the largest oil consumer.
      By: Jim Parkin
      The U.S. is the largest oil consumer.