The usual story of oil’s origin is that it’s fossilised plant or animal material that turned into oil when compressed, hence the term fossil fuel. Really?
In the (excellent) novel The Emperor’s Tomb by Steve Berry, one of the plot points is that oil doesn’t really come from organic material (biotic) – but is naturally formed (abiotic) deep within the earth. In the author’s note at the back separating the fact from the fiction, Berry has to say the following about the facts that inspired that element of the novel:
The debate between biotic and abiotic oil is real, and continues to this day. Does oil come from decaying organism or is it naturally produced by the earth? One source is finite, the other infinite. the Russians, at Stalin’s prodding, pioneered the abiotic theory in the 1950s and continue to find oil, utilizing the concept, in places where fossil fuels could never exist (chapters 15 and 17). Likewise, as Stephanie Nelle points out in chapter 15, wells in the Gulf of Mexico are depleting at an astoundingly slow rate, one that has confounded American experts. Diamondoids, or adamantantes (chapter 44), were first isolated from Czech petroleum in 1933, then from U.S. samples in the late 1950s. Of late, these amazing compounds have shown promising applications in nanotechnology. I adapted them as proof of abiotic oil since diamondoids can form only under extreme heat and pressure, the kind experienced deep withing the earth, far away from where any fossil fuels may lay.
And what of this long-standing myth of finite oil?
“Fossil fuel” is nothing more than a theory, created in 1757 by a Russian scientist named Mikhail Lomonosov. In proceedings before the Imperial Academy of Sciences, Lomonosov wrote, Rock oil originates as tiny bodies of animals buried in the sediments which, under the influence of increased temperature and pressure, acting during an unimaginably long period of time, transform into rock oil.
Many scientists question this claim, but, over time, we have simply come to believe that oil originates solely from organic compounds.
In 1956 the senior petroleum exploration geologist for the USSR said, The overwhelming preponderance of geological evidence compels the conclusion that crude oil and natural petroleum gas have no intrinsic connection with biological matter originating near the surface of the Earth. They are primordial materials which have erupted from great depths.
But few people listened to those words.
Raymond Learsy, in his 2005 book Over a Barrel, wrote, Nothing lasts: not fame, fortune, beauty, love, power, youth, or life itself. Scarcity rules. Accordingly, scarcity – or more accurately the perception of scarcity – spells opportunity for manipulators. The best example of this is OPEC, which continues to extract obscene profits from a scarcity of its own creation.
Learsy, though, leaves no doubt.
He, and many others, the Russians included, are absolutely convinced.
Oil is not scarce. We only fear that it is.
(The Emperor’s Tomb by Steve Berry, Writer’s Note, pages 435-436.)
Immanuel Velikovsky was a Russian Jewish scientist whose research into the catastrophes that have riddled our planet were highly ridiculed, as they contradicted evolution & other conventional assumptions. By examining ancient historical accounts, he constructed a history of enormous planetary catastrophes in our ancient past caused by large planets/comets passing. (He actually details evidence that Venus and Mars were among those comets, and were NOT originally part of our solar system.) Velikovsky did the math and made a number of predictions about the conditions etc that satellites would discover when they reached our solar system’s planets – predictions markedly different from the ones mainstream evolutionary scientists made about what would be found.
Who did the satellite discoveries vindicate? Velikovsky. (Much as mainstream scientists are loathe to admit it.)
ANYWAY, what did HE have to say about oil?
Crude petroleum is composed of two elements, carbon and hydrogen. The main theories of the origin of petroleum are:
1. The inorganic theory: Hydrogen and carbon were brought together in the rock formations of the earth under great heat and pressure.
2. The organic theory: Both the hydrogen and carbon which compose petroleum come from the remains of plant and animal life, in the main from microscopic marine and swamp life.
The organic theory implies that the process started after life was already abundant, at least at the bottom of the ocean. 
The tails of comets are composed mainly of carbon and hydrogen gases. Lacking oxygen, they do not burn in flight, but the inflammable gases, passing through an atmosphere containing oxygen, will be set on fire. If carbon and hydrogen gases, or vapor of a composition of these two elements, enter the atmosphere in huge masses, a part of them will burn, binding all the oxygen available at the moment; the rest will escape combustion, but in swift transition will become liquid. Falling on the ground, the substance, if liquid, would sink into the pores of the sand and into clefts between the rocks; falling on water, it would remain floating if the fire in the air is extinguished before new supplies of oxygen arrive from other regions.
The descent of a sticky fluid which came earthward and blazed with heavy smoke is recalled in the oral and written traditions of the inhabitants of both hemispheres.
Popol-Vuh, the sacred book of the Mayas, narrates:  “It was ruin and destruction . . . the sea was piled up … it was a great inundation . . . people were drowned in a sticky substance raining from the sky. . . . The face of the earth grew dark and the gloomy rain endured days and nights. . . . And then there was a great din of fire above their heads.” The entire population of the land was annihilated.
The Manuscript Quiche perpetuated the picture of the population of Mexico perishing in a downpour of bitumen:  “There descended from the sky a rain of bitumen and of a sticky substance. . . . The earth was obscured and it rained day and night. And men ran hither and thither and were a down; they tried to climb the trees, and the trees cast them far away; and when they tried to escape in caves and caverns, these were suddenly closed.”
A similar account is preserved in the Annals of Cuauhtitlan.* The age which ended in the rain of fire was called Quiauh-tonatiuh, which means “the sun of fire-rain.” 
And far away, in the other hemisphere, in Siberia, the Voguls carried down through the centuries and millennia this memory: “God sent a sea of fire upon the earth. . . . The cause of the fire they call ‘the fire-water.'” 
Half a meridian to the south, in the East Indies, the aboriginal tribes relate that in the reemote past Sengle-Das or “water of fire” rained from the sky; with very few exceptions, all men died.  The eighth plague as described in the Book of Exodus was “harad [meteorites] and fire mingled with the barad, very grievous, such as there was none like it in all the land of Egypt since it became a nation” (Exodus 9 : 24). There were “thunder [correct: loud noises] and barad, and the fire ran along upon the ground” (Exodus 9 : 23). The Papyrus Ipuwer describes this consuming fire: “Gates, columns, and walls are consumed by fire. The sky is in confusion.”  The papyrus says that this fire almost “exterminated mankind.”
The Midrashim, in a number of texts, state that naphtha, together with hot stones, poured down upon Egypt. “The Egyptians refused to let the Israelites go, and He poured out naphtha over them, burning blains [blisters].” It was “a stream of hot naphtha.”  Naphtha is petroleum in Aramaic and Hebrew.
The population of Egypt was “pursued with strange rains and hails and showers inexorable, and utterly consumed with fire: for what was most marvelous of all, in the water which quencheth all things the fire wrought yet more mightily,”  which is the nature of burning petroleum; in the register of the plagues in Psalms 105 it is referred to as “flaming fire,” and in Daniel (7 :10) as “river of fire” or “fiery stream.”
– In the Passover Haggadah it is said that “mighty men of Pul and Lud [Lydia in Asia Minor] were destroyed with consuming conflagration on the Passover.”
In the valley of the Euphrates the Babylonians often referred to “the rain of fire,” vivid in their memory. 
All the countries whose traditions of fire-rain I have cited actually have deposits of oil: Mexico, the East Indies, Siberia, Iraq, and Egypt.
For a span of time after the combustive fluid poured down, it may well have floated upon the surface of the seas, soaked the surface of the ground, and caught fire again and again. “For seven winters and summers the fire has raged … it has burnt up the earth,” narrate the Voguls of Siberia. 
The story of the wandering in the desert contains a number of references to fire springing out of the earth. The Israelites traveled three days’ journey away from the Mountain of the Lawgiving, and it happened that “the fire of the Lord burnt among them, and consumed them that were in the uttermost parts of the camp” (Numbers 11:1). The Israelites continued on their way. Then came the revolt of Korah and his confederates. “And the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed them up. . . . And all Israel that were round about them fled at the cry of them. . . . And there came out
a fire from the Lord, and consumed the two hundred and fifty men that offered incense.”  When they kindled the fire of incense, the vapors which rose out of the cleft in the rock caught the flame and exploded.
Unaccustomed to handling this oil, rich in volatile derivatives, the Israelite priests fell victims to the fire. The two elder sons of Aaron, Nadab and Abihu, “died before the Lord, when they offered strange fire before the Lord, in the wilderness of Sinai.”  The fire was called strange because it had not been known before and because it was of foreign origin.
If oil fell on the desert of Arabia and on the land of Egypt and burned there, vestiges of conflagration must be found in some of the tombs built before the end of the Middle Kingdom, into which the oil or some of its derivatives might have seeped.
We read in the description of the tomb of Antefoker, vizier of Sesostris I, a pharaoh of the Middle Kingdom: “A problem is set us by a conflagration, clearly deliberate, which has raged in the tomb, as in many another. . . . The combustible material must not only have been abundant, but of a light nature; for a fierce fire which speedily spent itself seems alone able to account for the fact that tombs so burnt remain
absolutely free from blackening, except in the lowest parts; nor are charred remains found as a rule. The conditions are puzzling.” 
“And what does natural history tell us?” asked Philo in his On the Eternity of the World,  and answered: “Destructions of things on earth, destructions not of all at once but of a very large number, are attributed by it to two principal causes, the tremendous onslaughts of fire and water. These two visitations, we are told, descend in turns after very long cycles of years. When the agent is the conflagration, a stream of heaven-sent fire pours out from above and spreads over many places and overruns great regions of the inhabited earth.”
The rain of fire-water contributed to the earth’s supply of petroleum; rock oil in the ground appears to be, partly at least, “star oil” brought down at the close of world ages, notably the age that came to its end in the middle of the second millennium before the present era.
The priests of Iran worshiped the fire that came out of the ground. The followers of
Zoroastrianism or Mazdaism are also called fire worshipers. The fire of the Caucasus was held in great esteem by all the inhabitants of the adjacent lands. Connected with the Caucasus and originating there is the legend of Prometheus.  He was chained to a rock for bringing fire to man. The allegorical character of this legend gains meaning when we consider Augustine’s words that Prometheus was a contemporary of Moses. 
Torrents of petroleum poured down upon the Caucasus and were consumed. The smoke of the Caucasus fire was still in the imaginative sight of Ovid, fifteen centuries later, when he described the burning of the world.
The continuing fires in Sibering fires in Siberia, the Caucasus, in the Arabian desert, and everywhere else were blazes that followed the great conflagration of the days when the earth was caught in vapors of carbon and hydrogen.
In the centuries that followed, petroleum was worshiped, burned in holy places; it was also used for domestic purposes. Then many ages passed when it was out of use. Only in the middle of the last century did man begin to exploit this oil, partly contributed by the comet of the time of the Exodus. He utilized its gifts, and today his highways are crowded with vehicles propelled by oil.
Into the heights rose man, and he accomplished the age-old dream of flying like a bird; for this, too, he uses the remnants of the intruding star that poured fire and sticky vapor upon his ancestors.
(Worlds in Collision by Immanuel Velikovsky, pages 53-58)
Footnotes in the text:
 Even before Plutarch the problem of the origin of petroleum was much discussed. Speaking of the visit of Alexander to the petroleum sources of Iraq, Plutarch said: ‘There has been much discussion about the origin of [this naphtha].” But in the extant text of Plutarch a sentence containing one of two rival views is missing. The remaining text reads: “. . . or whether rather the liquid substance that feeds the flame flows out from the soil which is rich and productive of fire.” Plutarch, Lives (transl. B. Perrin, 1919), “The Life of Alexander,” xxv.
 Popol-Vuh, le livre sacrS, ed. Brasseur (1861), Chap. Ill, p. 25.
 Brasseur, Histoire des nations civilis6es du Mexique, I, 55.
 Brasseur, Sources de I’histoire primitive du Mexique, p. 28.
 E. Seler, Gesammelte Abhandlungen zur amerikanischen Sprach- und Alter-tumsgeschichte (1902-1923), II, 798.
 Holmberg, Finno-Ugric, Siberian Mythology, p. 368.
 Ibid., p. 369. Also A. Nottrott, Die Gosnerische Mission unter den Kohls (1874). p. 25. See R. Andree, Die Flutsagen (1891).
 Papyrus Ipuwer 2 : 10; 7 : 1; 11 : 11; 12 : 6.
 Midrash Tanhuma, Midrash Psikta Raboti, and Midrash Wa-Yosha. For other sources see Ginzberg, Legends, II, 342-343, and V, 426.
 The Wisdom of Solomon (transl. Holmes. 1913) in The Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha of the Old Testament, ed. R. H. Charles.
 See A. Schott, “Die Vergleiche in den Akkadischen Konigsinschriften,” Mitt. d. Vorderasiat. Ges., XXX (1925), 89, 106.
 Holmberg, Finno-Ugric, Siberian Mythology, p. 369. 18 Numbers 16 : 32-35. Cf. Psalms 106: 17-18. 14 Numbers 3 : 4; cf. Numbers 26 : 61.
 N. de Garis Davies, The Tomb of Antefoker, Vizier of Sesostris I (1920), p. 5. i« On the Eternity of the World, Vol. IX of Philo (transl. F. H. Colson, 1941), Sect. 146-147.
 See A. Olrik, Ragnarok (German ed., 1922). is The City of God, Bk. XVIII, Chap. 8. (transl. M. Dods, ed. P. Schaff, 1907).
So… it would seem that oil is formed by natural processes deep within the earth (and that it’s not restricted to earth, as the ancient accounts indicate), is NOT a fossil fuel and is NOT finite. And the big environmental scare over it is utter rubbish, to put it politely.