The U.S. Department of Interior’s U.S. Geological Survey (USGS ) has released a report estimating the amount of unidentified conventional oil and gas resources worldwide. C.J. Schenk, “An Estimate of Undiscovered Conventional Oil and Gas Resources of the World, 2012,” USGS Fact Sheet, 2012-3042. The report stems from a geology-based assessment completed by USGS between 2009 and 2011 as part of the agency’s World Petroleum Research Project.  

According to the study, the United States contains about 16 percent of the world’s undiscovered conventional oil resources and 12 percent of the world’s undiscovered conventional natural gas supply. It did not include unconventional oil and natural gas resources, such as shale gas, light oil, light gas, coal-bed gas, heavy oil, and oil sands. The report found that 75 percent of the world’s undiscovered conventional oil is found in South America and the Caribbean; sub-Saharan Africa; the Middle East and North Africa; and the Arctic provinces of North America. Significant undiscovered conventional gas resources were found in all of the world’s regions.