Which Mineral comes from Animals and Plants?

We have already published an article about the definition of a mineral, and two of the properties were that a mineral must be solid and inorganic. There is one material which is always included as a mineral, however, which does not follow the rule. We have mentioned it before. Can you guess what it is? Let’s know detail about which mineral comes from animals and plants.

The mineral to which  we are referring is correctly called petroleum from  the Greek petra meaning  a rock  and the Latin oleum meaning oil. Petroleum is the name given to all the materials which occur in nature and are known chemically as hydrocarbons. This means that they are composed of combinations of carbon and hydrogen.

These materials may be gases, such as the natural gas which now supplies some of the domestic gas in Britain. There are also liquid oils from which we obtain our vital petrol (or gasoline as it is known in the United States).

Many other important products are derived from petroleum, from perfumes to plastics. You can appreciate, then, the importance of this mineral to our way of life in the industrialized nations.

Which Mineral comes from Animals and Plants

This map shows the distribution of the world’s coal and oil fields.

From the way in which  the question  is worded,  and from  what you  have read so far, you will  have  guessed that  the mineral that comes from animals and  plants is, in fact,  petroleum. Actually, many different original have been suggested for this mineral.

They have included the ideas that petroleum has been produced by the chemical reaction, from volcanoes, and from the decay of land plants. But  the evidence that  has been  gathered at an enormous  rate because  of the economic importance  of oil  has shown  that none  of these ideas is  likely  to be correct.

It is much more probable that oil was formed (and is still being formed today) from the decay of tiny marine plants and animals such as algae and the one-celled diatoms.

Which Mineral comes from Animals and Plants

Oil, filling the cavities in a porous rock, may become trapped in economic amounts in a variety of ways. Oil is associated with natural gas and water and is trapped by impervious layers of a lock.

The two most important conditions for the formation of petroleum are the activities of certain bacteria and time. It is very important to remember that petroleum products take millions of years to form and concentrate into quantities which can be worked.

But in 100 years we have consumed a large proportion of the world’s oil reserves. Oil, then,  formed as tiny  droplets  among  the particles  of muddy sediments  at the bottom of the sea where the  water  was stagnant  and there was little  air.

Which Mineral comes from Animals and Plants?

An oil pipeline to carry oil from its source to a refinery.

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