The United States consumed 18.1 million barrels of petroleum products per day in 2020, a 25-year low. According to the Energy Information Administration, petroleum consumption declined in every energy-consuming sector from 2019 to 2020, including a record 15% decrease in the transportation sector. The main cause of the drop in petroleum usage, particularly for transportation fuels, was the COVID-19 epidemic.
In 2020, motor gasoline, the most widely used petroleum product in the United States, accounting for 44% of total petroleum consumption. The transportation sector consumes the majority of gasoline in the United States (96 percent), with the industrial and commercial sectors consuming the rest. Gas consumption in the United States fell to 8 million barrels per day in 2020, down 14% from 2019 and the lowest level since 1997.
This study discovered 25,147 ads from just 25 oil and gas companies on Facebook’s platforms in 2020, totaling over 431 million views. This suggests that the sector is now leveraging social media to directly reach a large audience and sway public opinion on climate change and energy mix issues. The total cost of these advertising was $9,597,376. The advertising either pushed the industry’s climate-friendliness, including voluntary targets, investments in renewables, and presenting fossil gas as green, or they promoted oil and gas’s continued place in the energy mix.