This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

February 05, 2003

Energy Companies Added Significant Oil and Gas Reserves in 2001

Renewable energy advocates often look to the world's limited supply of oil and natural gas as one of the incentives for developing new energy sources. Although those energy sources are ultimately finite, recent data from DOE's Energy Information Administration (EIA) suggests that the world won't be running out of them anytime soon. In fact, in 2001 the major U.S. energy companies added the equivalent of 7.9 billion barrels of oil to their reserves, thanks to an increase in spending on exploration and drilling. The increase in reserves was the largest since EIA began tracking the industry in 1974. To achieve that record increase in reserves, the major energy companies boosted their spending on exploration and development in 2001 by 35 percent, to $50.2 billion. See the EIA press release.