Oil was a commonly used energy source, abundantly found in several areas around the world, particularly in the Middle East and Central Asia. In the United States, some of their oil came from local sources, including from Alaska and California, but they still heavily relied on outside sources. Over time, oil started to become scarce, resulting in price inflations. Due to its scarcity, by sometime after Day 5, oil prices reached over $100 per barrel. The sources and prices of oil proved to be a motivator to several plots, particularly from American business men and government members.
At around 6:54am on Day 1, Jack Bauer, whose family was captured in order for Ira Gaines make him work for him to assassinate David Palmer, took Nina Myers to an oil rig to kill her, though Jack was able to put a flak jacket on her without Gaines knowledge. Later, at around 9:45pm, Andre Drazen put Jack on another oil rig to await for further instructions to help rescue his daughter and assassinate Palmer.
Max and Alexander Trepkos run an oil consortium in the Caspian Sea. They hired Peter Kingsley to make the United States go into war with the Middle East after planting a nuclear weapon in Los Angeles, in order to quadruple their oil prices.
Jack Bauer, under the alias of "Frank Flynn" worked in an oil field in the Mojave Desert from sometime after the end of Day 4, until the beginning of Day 5, where he was forced out of hiding. Also, Walt Cummings was in a plot to have Dawn Brigade separatists transport Sentox nerve gas to Russia. When it would be brought to Central Asia, this would prove the existence of weapons of mass destruction there, and justify US military presence, guaranteeing a healthy flow of oil for the next generation in America.
BXJ Technologies owned oil leases off the West Coast. One of the off-shore oil platforms was used for Phillip Bauer and Cheng Zhi to take the FB subcircuit board to China, only to have the rig destroyed by US forces.