US still top producer of petroleum, natural gas hydrocarbons - EIA

07 June 2017 17:21 Source:ICIS News

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HOUSTON (ICIS)--The US was the top global producer of petroleum and natural gas hydrocarbons in 2016, its fifth year in a row, according to data from the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) on Wednesday.

Source: EIA

According to the EIA, the US remained the top producer despite production declines for both petroleum and natural gas relative to 2015 levels. US petroleum production fell by 300,000 bbl/day in 2016, the EIA said, as a result of relatively low oil prices.

US natural gas production decreased by 2.3bn cubic feet/day (65m cubic metres/day) in 2016, despite a modest recovery in prices later in the year, the EIA noted.

The EIA noted that the US has been the world’s top natural gas producer since 2009 when it surpassed Russia. The US surpassed Saudi Arabia for petroleum hydrocarbon production in 2013, the government agency said.

In terms of energy content, total petroleum and natural gas hydrocarbon production is almost evenly split between petroleum and natural gas both in the US and in Russia, according to the EIA.

Conversely, the EIA said Saudi Arabia's production favours petroleum heavily, with total petroleum production being made up of crude oil and lease condensate, tight oil, extra-heavy oil and bitumen. Additionally, various processes produce natural gas plant liquids (NGPL), biofuels, and refinery processing gain, among other liquid fuels.

According to the EIA, crude oil and lease condensate made up about 60% of total petroleum hydrocarbon production in 2016 for the US.

Saudi Arabia and Russia by comparison possess a larger percentage of crude oil and lease condensate, as the two produce lesser amounts of NGPLs, and have smaller volumes of refinery gain and biofuels production.

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By David Haydon