Our use of petroleum has produced the following environmental issues:
The massive emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases by millions of cars, trucks, and airplanes using gasoline, diesel fuel, jet fuel, and other liquid petroleum products is probably a major factor in global warming.
Gasoline, diesel and other petroleum derivatives contribute to atmospheric pollution from sulfur oxides, nitrogen oxides, and carbon monoxide.
Oil spills are an ongoing challenge in the extraction and transportation of oil. The 2010 Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico illustrates the potential devastation that can occur,
Waste disposal of hazardous by-products of petroleum refining and disposal of the final products after use is a significant environmental challenge.
Petroleum products can be flammable or toxic. Careful handling is required to ensure safety.
The US Dept of Energy's site, explaining the basic environmental problems in the use of petroleum.
Have we reached "peak oil", the time when petroleum production starts to decline due to diminishing resources? If not, when is that likely to happen? When peak oil does occur, how will we meet the demand for oil or an oil substitute?
The massive use of petroleum is one of the principal sources for greenhouse gases, chemicals substantially responsible for global warming. How much is the use of petroleum harming the planet, and what can be done to decrease its damaging effects?
Oil, more than any other single commodity, drives foreign and, to a considerable extent, domestic politics and policy. The dependency of oil importing countries on the production stability of oil exporting countries reaches into every aspect of the modern global economy.
Oil sand fields in Canada are potentially vast sources for petroleum. The USA imports more oil from Canada than from any other country, and a large portion of that imported oil is from Canadian oil sands. Examine here the potential and the controversies regarding this unconventional but abundant source of energy.
This controversial pipeline would carry synthetic crude petroleum from the oilsands areas of Alberta, Canada, to refineries in the USA. Resistance from environmental groups has delayed federal approval of the project.