Each of us uses fossil fuels on a daily basis, and often we don’t even realize how much. This applies to the burning of natural gas for heating the home, refueling the car, but also the use of products that are made from petroleum-based materials. In 2021, the world consumed nearly 490 exajoules of fossil fuels.
How much fossil fuel do we use?
See the infographic below from Visual Capitalist that shows how much fossil fuel one person uses in a lifetime. The visualization shows the consumption of an average person over 80 years of their life. The visualization uses data from the National Mining Association and BP’s Statistical Review of World Energy. It must be remembered that human consumption of fossil fuels is enormous. The average American consumes more than 23 barrels of petroleum products in a single year. The cube of the average individual’s annual petroleum product consumption reaches around 1.5 meters. In the visualization you can also see the amount of coal and compressed natural gas consumed. When you multiply that amount by the number of people on the planet, that’s a huge amount of fossil fuel that we as humanity will use up.
(Click on the image to enlarge)