Fossil fuel industry in the UK - Statistics & Facts

The United Kingdom fossil fuel industry has seen a decline in indigenous production, which in 2017 fell to nearly a third of what it had been in 2000, although figures for 2018 showed a slight improvement. This development is reflected in the energy distribution, which shows that by 2017 fossil fuels accounted for 80.1 percent of overall energy used. This was a decrease compared to 1970, when fossil fuels still made up 96.5 percent of energy consumed.
In 2018, the average price of fossil fuels bought by major power producers saw an increase again, with the price of oil listed at 3.89 pence per kWh in the fourth quarter of 2018, making it the most expensive fossil fuel.

The number of enterprises in the crude petroleum and natural gas extraction industry has been declining in parallel with production figures. By 2019, there were 40 enterprises with an annual turnover of more than 5 million British pounds. This was a decrease compared to four years previous at 50 enterprises. The decline in the number of coal mining enterprises was even more pronounced. Only five enterprises with an annual turnover of more than 5 million British pounds were still operating in 2019.

In contrast to the overall decline in oil production as described above, a combination of production efficiency improvements and new fields has seen a fuel production increase on the United Kingdom Continental Shelf. Figures were estimated to rise to 630 million barrels of oil equivalent in 2019. As for the indigenous production of coal, a steady decline has been recorded between 2012 and 2018, with figures for 2018 being only a fifth of production volume five years previous.

In terms of trading, imports of crude oil and natural gas had experienced only slight fluctuations between 2000 and 2018, while exports had increased since 2014. In contrast, coal mining trade was in decline.

The most common form coal use was the transformation to electricity, with 6.7 million metric tons worth used for electricity generation in 2018. Coke manufacture took up some 1.8 million metric tons worth.
The pulp, paper and printing industry was the second highest coal consumer after the mineral products industry, accounting for 102 thousand metric tons of coal used in 2018.

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Fossil fuel industry in the UK

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Enterprises and employment

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