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By Robert Rapier on Jun 18, 2012 with 14 responses

Highlights of the 2012 BP Statistical Review

Last week the 2012 BP Statistical Review of World Energy was released. I always look forward to the release, because the data represent the most comprehensive, publicly available database on energy consumption and production statistics. I have now read through this year’s report, picking out what I believe are important trends and data points. In this column I want to highlight several key points, including:

  • The reason for the conflict in numbers between the EIA and BP
  • Barack Obama’s historical position in presiding over increasing U.S. oil production
  • The U.S. becoming more energy independent
  • New global records for oil production and consumption
  • Energy consumption and carbon emissions differential between OECD and developing countries
  • Growth in renewables such as solar, wind, and biofuels


BP’s press release noted the fact that global energy consumption grew by 2.5% in 2011. However, in a trend that I discussed at length in my book Power Plays (last year’s Statistical Review provided data for quite a few graphics for my book), consumption in OECD countries actually fell by 0.8% while growing at a 5.3% clip in developing countries.

A lot of the stories about the report have focused on energy developments in the U.S. For the 3rd year in a row, the U.S. had the strongest growth in oil production of all non-OPEC countries. 81% of US energy demand was supplied by domestic sources in 2012, which is up from the record low of 70% in 2005. At 7.8 million barrels per day (bpd) of production, the U.S. ranked behind only Saudi Arabia (11.1 million bpd) and the Russian Federation (10.3 million bpd).

Astute readers may note that 7.8 million bpd is well above the Energy Information Administration statistics on 2011 oil production for the U.S., which was 5.7 million bpd. That is because the EIA is not counting liquids that were separated from natural gas processing plants (NGLs) while the BP numbers do include that. Because of the large expansion in natural gas fracking, there has likewise been a significant increase in the production of natural gas liquids. Since a large fraction of these liquids do end up in the transportation fuel supply, it is fair to count them as oil production — but important to note the difference in definitions between BP and the EIA.

Regardless, the EIA data also show an oil production increase for the 3rd year in a row. Ironically, since he isn’t considered a friend of the oil industry, President Obama is on track to have the distinction as the first president since Lyndon B. Johnson to preside over 4 straight years of increasing U.S. oil production. (The reasons for that are discussed in detail here).

U.S. oil consumption fell by almost 2% in 2011 after having rebounded in 2010, and is barely above 2009 levels. Combined with the increase in U.S. oil production, the percentage of U.S. oil consumption that is supplied domestically increased to above 40% (41.6%) for the first time since 1998 (42.3%). During the period 2005 through 2007, that percentage had fallen to 33%. So it is correct to say that the U.S. is becoming more energy independent.

Other oil producers in North America showed mixed results. While production in Mexico continued the decline of recent years by falling another 0.8%, production in Canada — fueled by growth in oil sands production — increased by 5%. Over the past decade, oil production in Canada has grown by almost 32%, but production has fallen by 18% in Mexico.

Globally, oil production and consumption both set new all-time records. Consumption grew by 0.7% over 2010, to 88 million barrels per day, while production was up 1.3% to 83.6 million barrels per day. (The discrepancy between consumption and production is because the consumption number includes fuels produced from biomass and coal).

Global carbon dioxide emissions increased by 3%, driven primarily by strong growth of coal consumption in Asia Pacific (up 8.4%). Again, this was another theme from my book; the growth in carbon dioxide emissions is being driven by a “hurricane” of development in developing regions. Global growth in carbon dioxide emissions occurred despite the fact that emissions dropped by nearly 1% in OECD countries, and by 1.8% in the U.S.

To put U.S. carbon dioxide emissions in perspective (and show why I believe this problem is largely beyond U.S. control), if you removed all U.S. emissions from the 2011 tally it would only take emissions back to 2003 levels. If Asia Pacific’s emissions were removed, emissions would be at 1977 levels.

In 2011, U.S. carbon dioxide emissions accounted for 17.7% of the world’s total. The trend over the past decade has been a steady decline from 2000 levels, when the U.S. was responsible for 25% of the world’s total. Some of the decline is because emissions in the U.S. have in fact declined, but some is because global emissions have grown.

Asia Pacific’s emissions reached 45% of the world’s total, which represents a steady increase from their 2000 share which was 32%. The region is on a trend to have 50% of the world’s total carbon dioxide emissions by the end of the decade.

On the renewable energy front, strong gains were made in several areas. Solar photovoltaic (PV) capacity was added at a whopping 73%, with triple digit increases in a dozen countries. Actual power produced by the sun increased by 86%, which is more than 50 times greater than the levels in 2000. However, to put that in perspective, 2011 electricity production from solar energy only represented 0.3% of the world’s total electricity consumption.

Wind power capacity increased by 20.5%, and actual power produced by the wind increased by 26%. Wind power accounted for 2% of the world’s total electricity production in 2011. Geothermal capacity increased by only 0.3%, but the actual amount of power generated by geothermal was unreported.

Biofuels grew by 10,000 bpd of oil equivalent (BOE), which amounted to an increase of 0.7% over 2010 data. This slow growth rate was largely influenced by Brazil’s decline of 50,000 BOE, which represented a 15% decline from 2010. Cumulatively, biofuel production was equivalent to 1.5% of total global oil production.

In the next column, I will represent some of these trends graphically.

Link to Original Article: Highlights of the 2012 BP Statistical Review

By Robert Rapier

  1. By Tom G. on June 18, 2012 at 10:56 am

    Robert:

    In your analysis you commented that “Combined with the increase in U.S. oil production, the percentage of U.S. oil consumption that is supplied domestically increased to above 40% (41.6%) for the first time since 1998 (42.3%).”. 

    Question – how much oil do we still import? 

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  2. By Robert Rapier on June 18, 2012 at 2:01 pm

    In 2011, we imported 11.4 million barrels per day of crude oil and finished products, of which 8.9 million barrels per day was crude oil. (Source). We also exported finished products, and were a net exporter of finished products, so the real relevant number would be our net imports, which looks to be about 8 million bpd.

    RR

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  3. By Joules Burn on June 18, 2012 at 6:40 pm

    Robert, you said:

    Since a large fraction of these liquids do end up in the transportation fuel supply, it is fair to count them as oil production

    Please justify that statement. According to the EIA:

    http://www.eia.gov/dnav/pet/pet_pnp_inpt_dc_nus_mbblpd_a.htm

    NGLs make up a very small fraction of refinery input. Furthermore, the amount hasn’t changed much at all over the past half dozen years. Also, the fraction of propane production used for transportation is also rather small (<5%). 

    One can perhaps make the claim that NGLs can substitute for crude-sourced feedstocks for non-fuel petrochemical products, but I can’t see a justification for inclusion based on use in transportation.

    JB

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    • By Robert Rapier on June 18, 2012 at 7:57 pm

      I would also add that the ethane/propane that does not end up in the fuel supply mostly ends up as plastics. 

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  4. By Robert Rapier on June 18, 2012 at 7:24 pm

    Please justify that statement. According to the EIA:

    http://www.eia.gov/dnav/pet/pet_pnp_inpt_dc_nus_mbblpd_a.htm

    NGLs make up a very small fraction of refinery input. 

    What is NGL production, 2 million bpd? The link shows that half a million barrels a day goes into the fuel supply. That’s a pretty good fraction. Some of it gets exported as well and ends up in fuel supplies. Most of the ethane/propane fraction likely ends up in petrochemicals as ethylene and propylene, but a respectable amount of NGLs certainly contribute to the fuel supply. Probably the best way to account for it is to subtract out the ethane/propane fraction, because most of the rest does end up in the fuel supply.

    RR

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  5. By Joules Burn on June 18, 2012 at 8:15 pm

    But the refinery NGL input is the same as it was in the 1980s.

    http://www.eia.gov/dnav/pet/hist/LeafHandler.ashx?n=PET&s=MNGRIUS2&f=A

    There is no room in the current transportation fuel mix for more NGL from Bakken or anywhere.

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  6. By Robert Rapier on June 18, 2012 at 8:23 pm

    There is no room in the current transportation fuel mix for more NGL from Bakken or anywhere.

    Oh, I wouldn’t say that. It’s a function of price. If the price is depressed, I could get all NGLs into the fuel supply. Look up the feedstock for an alkylation unit. They make very nice gasoline blending feedstocks. The only reason alkylates aren’t used as straight gasoline is due to the cost of the feedstock.

    RR

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  7. By mac on June 19, 2012 at 9:50 am

    RR

    I read somewhere that BP thinks we have so far only used up about 1/3 of known oil reserves.  The EU statistics and U.S. Gov.  statistics seem to say we have used up about half of  the oil.

    Any comment on this ?

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    • By Robert Rapier on June 19, 2012 at 12:58 pm

      It all depends on what they assume is recoverable. Everyone agrees that the resource is far greater than the trillion or so barrels that we have used. The disagreement comes in how much of the remaining reserves can be produced.

      Last year’s BP report said 1.4 trillion barrels of remaining reserves; this year’s says 1.6 trillion barrels. The difference is the 200 billion barrels of heavy oil sands that Venezuela added. Will that ever be produced? Their oil production has been on the decline for many years.

      RR

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  8. By mac on June 19, 2012 at 1:13 pm

    Good old BP and Exxon………………… 

    “You just gotta luv em.”

     

    “In a report released last  month, BP outlined data which suggests that electric cars will only account for 4 percent of the global fleet of commercial and passenger vehicles by 2030. 

    “Oil will remain the dominant transport fuel,” said BP Chief Executive Bob Dudley. “We expect 87 percent of transport fuel in 2030 will still be petroleum based.”

    In case you’re wondering, that equates to roughly 64 million vehicles worldwide. 

    Exxon Mobil on the other hand, is even more skeptical. 

    In its 2040 Energy Outlook, the firm said electric vehicles, plug-in hybrids and natural gas-fuelled cars will only represent 5 percent of the global fleet by 2040.”

    Wait a minute……………

    Last month pure BEV got 2.5 % market share of new car sales in (oil rich) Norway.

    Only 1.4 % market share in Hawaii.

    And just under 1% combined BEV and PHEV sales in Belgium.

    The “fact finders” at BP and EXXON need to seek work as stand up comedians.

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  9. By mac on June 19, 2012 at 1:34 pm

    “It all depends on what they assume is recoverable.”

    Well recovery rates are increasing and look what Texaco has done out there in the older California fields.  Also,   Schlumberger with new fracking technology leading to increased recovery in horizontal wells.

     

    Personally. I think there may be more (recoverable) oil out there than we presently suspect. (along the lines of  the BP forecast)

    But,  I ought to shut up on that point,  lest I offend the EV crowd.  I am also a fan of EVs.

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  10. By Benjamin Cole on June 23, 2012 at 5:42 am

    Seems like Peak Oil and Peak Demand are still a ways off….

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  11. By Izzy on April 22, 2013 at 11:10 am

    Interesting article and topic discussing in a deep level for energy figures . You say you always look forward BP Outlook release, did you already take look also for the Energy Statistics Yearbook (http:// yearbook.enerdata.net ) from the Enerdata? Usually they launch at the same time and figures they provided are well accurated .

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