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AEO2013 Early Release Overview

Release Date: December 5, 2012   |  Report Release Schedule: April 15 - May 2, 2013   |   Report Number: DOE/EIA-0383ER(2013)

This release is an abridged version of the Annual Energy Outlook that highlights changes in the AEO Reference case projections for key energy topics. The Early Release includes data tables for the Reference case only. The AEO2013 will be released between April 15 and May 2.

See release schedule.


Download the AEO2013 Early Release Report


In preparing the AEO2013 Reference case, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) evaluated a wide range of trends and issues that could have major implications for U.S. energy markets. This overview presents the AEO2013 Reference case and compares it with the AEO2012 Reference case released in June 2012 (see Table 1 on pages 15-16). Because of the uncertainties inherent in any energy market projection, the Reference case results should not be viewed in isolation. Readers are encouraged to review the alternative cases when the complete AEO2013 publication is released, in order to gain perspective on how variations in key assumptions can lead to different outlooks for energy markets.

To provide a basis against which alternative cases and policies can be compared, the AEO2013 Reference case generally assumes that current laws and regulations affecting the energy sector remain unchanged throughout the projection (including the implication that laws that include sunset dates do, in fact, end at the time of those sunset dates). This assumption helps increase the comparability of the Reference case with other analyses, clarifies the relationship of the Reference case to other AEO2013 cases, and enables policy analysis with less uncertainty regarding unstated legal or regulatory assumptions.

Key updates made for the AEO2013 Reference case include the following:

  • Extension of the projection period through 2040, an additional five years beyond AEO2012.
  • Adoption of a new Liquid Fuels Market Module (LFMM) in place of the Petroleum Market Module used in earlier AEOs provides for more granular and integrated modeling of petroleum refineries and all other types of current and potential future liquid fuels production technologies. This allows more direct analysis and modeling of the regional supply and demand effects involving crude oil and other feedstocks, current and future processes, and marketing to consumers.
  • A shift to the use of Brent spot price as the reference oil price. AEO2013 also presents the average West Texas Intermediate (WTI) spot price of light, low-sulfur crude oil delivered in Cushing, Oklahoma, and includes the U.S. annual average refiners' acquisition cost of imported crude oil, which is more representative of the average cost of all crude oils used by domestic refiners.

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