New oil is being naturally cracked, or distilled, inside the basins of earth this very minute, petroleum geologists believe.
It is believed that petroleum is created when deposits of incompletely oxidated plant and animal sediment are subjected to great heat and pressure from overlying sediments, causing partial distillation.
Such deposits and sediments collect in ocean basins today, replicating the conditions under which oil was formed in the past.
Once oil is formed, it migrates, sometimes long distances, and may form pools that are accessible to drillers.
One great example is the Gulf of California, where new diesel oil is being made today. Geologists also list places like the Gulf of Mexico, the Persian Gulf, the Orinoco Delta and the Caspian Sea as oil incubators.
The processes of oil formation are no different from what happened a million or a hundred million years ago, and the clock is still moving with geological slowness.
In order to make all the supply we have found it would take about twenty-seven million years.
A lot of oil has been made in the last million years, a short time for a geologist, but a long time for would-be users.