Oil Field

An oil field is a region with an abundance of oil wells extracting petroleum (crude oil) from below ground. Because the oil reservoirs typically extend over a large area, possibly several hundred kilometres across, full exploitation entails multiple wells scattered across the area. In addition, there may be exploratory wells probing the edges, pipelines to transport the oil elsewhere, and support facilities.

Because an oil field may be remote from civilization, establishing a field is often an extremely complicated exercise in logistics. For instance, workers have to work there for months or years and require housing. In turn, housing and equipment require electricity and water. Pipelines in cold areas may need to be heated. Excess natural gas may be burned off if there is no way to make use of it, requiring a furnace and stacks, and pipes to carry it from well to furnace.

Thus, the typical oil field resembles a small self-contained city in the midst of a landscape dotted with drilling rigs and/or the pump jacks known as "nodding donkeys" because of their bobbing arm. Several companies, such as BJ Services, Bechtel, Esso, Schlumberger Limited, Baker Hughes and Halliburton, have organizations that specialize in the large-scale construction of the infrastructure and providing specialized services required to operate a field profitably.

More than 40,000 oil fields are scattered around the globe, on land and offshore. The largest are the Ghawar Field in Saudi Arabia and the Burgan Field in Kuwait, with more than 60 billion barrels (9.5×109 m3) estimated in each. Most oil fields are much smaller. According to the US Department of Energy (Energy Information Administration), as of 2003 the US alone had over 30,000 oil fields.

In the modern age, the location of oil fields with proven oil reserves is a key underlying factor in many geopolitical conflicts.

The term oilfield is also used as a shorthand to refer to the entire petroleum industry. However, it is more accurate to divide the oil industry into three sectors: upstream (crude production from wells and separation of water from oil), midstream (pipeline and tanker transport of crude) and downstream (refining and marketing of refined products).

Other articles related to "oil, oil field, oil fields, field":

History Of Santa Barbara, California - Early 20th Century To World War II - 1925 Earthquake
... In 1928, oil was found at the Ellwood Oil Field on the other side of Santa Barbara, and development of this new and rich pool was fast the peak production in 1930, only two years later, was 14.6 ... As at the Summerland Oil Field, derricks went along piers into the ocean, and the cliffs were dotted with storage tanks ... In 1929, as part of the wild burst of oil-drilling activity following on the Ellwood discovery, the Mesa Oil Field was discovered within the city limits ...
San Ardo Oil Field
... The San Ardo Oil Field is a large oil field in Monterey County, California, in the United States ... of 530,000,000 barrels (84,000,000 m3) of oil, it is the 13th-largest oil field in California, and of the top twenty California oil fields in size ... As of the end of 2006, the principal operators of the field were Chevron Corp ...
Buena Vista Oil Field - Setting
... The oil field is in two parts, the Buena Vista Hills Area and the Buena Vista Front Area, both roughly linear features about 12 miles (19 km) long, running parallel about two miles (3 km) apart, and ... The town of Taft is adjacent to the southwest, about halfway along the field ... The oil field underlies the Buena Vista Hills, a low range with a maximum elevation of 1,300 feet (400 m), in their entirety, and the Buena Vista Front Area is mostly in the Buena Vista ...
Lost Hills Oil Field
... The Lost Hills Oil Field is a large oil field in the Lost Hills Range, north of the town of Lost Hills in western Kern County, California, in the United States ...
Leduc No. 1 - Discovery - Leduc-Woodbend Oil Field
1, but revealed little oil ... The company worried that Leduc would become only a minor oil field, however a decision was made to continue the search even lower ... same day, May 21, 1947, ushering in Alberta's oil boom ...

Famous quotes containing the words field and/or oil:

    In the beginning, I wanted to enter what was essentially a man’s field. I wanted to prove I could do it. Then I found that when I did as well as the men in the field I got more credit for my work because I am a woman, which seems unfair.
    Eugenie Clark (b. 1922)

    As a rule they will refuse even to sample a foreign dish, they regard such things as garlic and olive oil with disgust, life is unliveable to them unless they have tea and puddings.
    George Orwell (1903–1950)