The westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is bordered by the Arctic Ocean to the north, the Black Sea to the southeast, the Mediterranean Sea to the south and the Atlantic Ocean to the west. The economic and political association of 27 European member states, the European Union (EU) has developed a single market through which a standardized system of laws apply, and under this union, sixteen member states have adopted the euro as its common currency. In 2006, the EU had a gross inland energy consumption of 1,825 million tonnes of oil equivalent, with nuclear energy as the primary source of energy produced in the region. Currently, the EU imports around 82% of its oil and 57% of its natural gas resources.
Piping engineers apply the principles of mathematics, physics and chemistry to assure the design of pipe systems used to convey liquid or gas from one location to another. Specialists in this field may focus on materials, design or stress analysis, and they ensure that piping systems are designed, fabricated, installed, inspected, operated and maintained. This is extremely important to the safety of personnel, public safety, and facility reliability.