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The Key Countries in the Current and Future Energy Landscape

Key countries in the geography of fossil fuels
 
The world's conventional oil resources are relatively concentrated, with a third of the planet's reserves located in just two countries: Venezuela and Saudi Arabia. Adding in Canada, Iran and Iraq, five countries account for two thirds of total reserves. And once Russia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates are factored in, the percentage rises to 80%. In short, eight countries hold 80% of the world's oil reserves.
 
The geography of oil production is different, but just as concentrated. The United States is currently the world's largest oil producer. This is a very recent development and is due primarily to the American shale oil boom. Saudi Arabia and Russia rank second and third. Together, these three countries account for 40% of global oil production. With Canada and China, the percentage rises to 50%. Next come the United Arab Emirates, Iran and Iraq. The Middle East, which holds 50% of the world's oil reserves, only represents 30% of global oil production today, which means that it will be a key region in the future.
 
The two main countries with natural gas reserves are Iran and Russia, which between them hold a third of total global reserves. With Qatar and Turkmenistan, the percentage rises to 60%. Other countries with significant reserves include the United States, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Venezuela and Nigeria. In all, just nine countries account for 80% of global natural gas reserves, and the Middle East alone holds 40% of the total.
 
Even though fossil fuels will continue to dominate the global energy mix over the next 20 years, more and more energy will come from renewable sources and decentralized production will be increasingly possible. This will contribute to local economic, social and human development all around the world.