Canada produced 21.2 million cubic metres (133.6 million barrels) of crude oil and equivalent products in January, up 5.2% compared with the same month in 2016.
January production at a record level
The production of crude oil and equivalent products reached a record high in January 2017. This was the fourth consecutive month where production exceeded 20 million cubic metres. The increase was primarily attributable to non-upgraded crude bitumen production, which surpassed eight million cubic metres for the first time (up 7.9% to 8.1 million cubic metres), and synthetic crude (up 9.3% to 5.7 million cubic metres).
Meanwhile, light and medium crude oil (down 2.6% to 4.0 million cubic metres) and heavy crude oil (down 2.2% to 2.0 million cubic metres) continued to decline.
Non-upgraded crude bitumen production consisted of mined crude bitumen (6.8 million cubic metres), plus in situ crude bitumen (7.8 million cubic metres), minus crude bitumen sent for further processing (6.5 million cubic metres).
Production of non-conventional crude oil continues to rise
In January, crude oil production (excluding equivalent products) totalled 19.8 million cubic metres. Non-conventional crude oil production, which consisted of non-upgraded crude bitumen and synthetic crude oil, increased 8.5% to 13.8 million cubic metres.
Conventional crude production of light, medium and heavy crude oils decreased in January, down 2.4% compared with the same month in 2016, to 6.0 million cubic metres. Year-over-year, production has declined in 23 of the last 24 months.
Alberta produced 17.1 million cubic metres of crude oil and equivalent products, up 5.5% from January 2016. The province accounted for 80.5% of Canada's total production. In the same month, Saskatchewan produced 2.4 million cubic metres, or 11.2% of the total, while Newfoundland and Labrador, at 1.2 million cubic metres, constituted 5.9% of total Canadian production.
Refinery use of crude oil
In January, input of crude oil to Canadian refineries totalled 8.8 million cubic metres. Conventional crude oil represented 63.1% of the total, while non-conventional crude oil accounted for the remaining 36.9%. Light and medium crude oil (4.4 million cubic metres) and synthetic crude oil (2.9 million cubic metres) were the main types of crude oil used by Canadian refineries.
Exports and imports
Exports of crude oil and equivalent products edged down 0.4% in January compared with the same month in 2016, to 16.7 million cubic metres. The vast majority of production (92.0%) was exported via pipelines, while other means such as rail, truck and marine transportation accounted for the remaining 8.0%. Over the same period, imports to Canadian refineries increased 11.0% to 3.2 million cubic metres.
Closing inventories of crude oil and equivalent products totalled 19.2 million cubic metres in January. The total was split between closing inventories held in pipelines and terminals (12.3 million cubic metres), refineries (3.9 million cubic metres) and fields and plants (3.0 million cubic metres).
Marketable natural gas increases
Canada produced 14.5 billion cubic metres of marketable natural gas in January, up 5.7% compared with the same month in 2016. Alberta (68.9%) and British Columbia (28.0%) accounted for the bulk of Canadian production.
Total consumption by residential, industrial and commercial users rose 8.0% over the same period.
Exports of natural gas by pipeline to the United States increased 5.4% to 7.8 billion cubic metres and imports were up 40.4% to 2.5 billion cubic metres.
Additional information on natural gas is available in "Natural gas transmission, storage and distribution," published in The Daily on March 24, 2017.
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