U.S. Energy Information Administration - EIA - Independent Statistics and Analysis
Today in Energy
In April 2014, after 35 years of shipping propane from western Canada to the upper Midwest, the Cochin pipeline was removed from propane service, and in July repurposed to ship light petroleum liquids north from Illinois to western Canada. Without this pipeline, western Canadian propane production has been shipped by other existing transport modes or placed into inventory at Canadian storage facilities. Recently, the declining value of western Canadian propane has encouraged the development of projects to provide additional outlets for growing production.
According to EIA monthly supply data through December 2014, which EIA released in late February, U.S. exports of fuel ethanol in 2014 reached their second-highest level at a total of 826 million gallons. This level was second only to the 1.2 billion gallons exported during 2011 and 33% more than exports of fuel ethanol in 2013. Similarly, U.S. imports of ethanol, which totaled approximately 377 million gallons during 2013, fell by 81% to a total of 73 million gallons in 2014, their lowest annual level since 2010. As a result, the United States was a net exporter of fuel ethanol for the fifth consecutive year and exported the fuel to 37 different countries in 2014.
Note: Q1 2015 prices are through March 16.
Based on financial statements from selected international oil and natural gas companies, spending on upstream investments was 12% lower in fourth-quarter 2014 compared to the same period in 2013. Upstream spending on exploration and development typically accounts for the bulk of these companies' investment expenditures.
Note: Data include generation from plants greater than 1 megawatt.
California has become the first state with more than 5% of its annual utility-scale electricity generation from utility-scale solar power, according to EIA's Electric Power Monthly. California's utility-scale (1 megawatt (MW) or larger) solar plants generated a record 9.9 million megawatthours (MWh) of electricity in 2014, an increase of 6.1 million MWh from 2013. California's utility-scale solar production in 2014 was more than three times the output of the next-highest state, Arizona, and more than all other states combined.
After increasing for 15 consecutive weeks, crude oil storage at Cushing, Oklahoma, reached 54.4 million barrels on March 13, according to EIA's Weekly Petroleum Status Report. This volume is the highest on record, but not the highest percent of storage utilization, as working storage capacity at Cushing has also increased over time.
After reaching record levels in 2013, United States imports of biomass-based diesel fuel (both biodiesel and renewable diesel) fell 36%, to 333 million gallons in 2014. Uncertainty surrounding future Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) targets and the absence of a late-year influx of volumes from Argentina were two main factors in this decline.
Note: U.S. crude oil inventories exclude Strategic Petroleum Reserves. December 2014 to February 2015 are estimates.
With lower U.S. refinery runs and increases in domestic crude oil production, U.S. commercial crude oil inventories at the end of February provided the most days of supply since the mid-1980s. Commercial crude inventories were sufficient to supply 29 days of U.S. refinery demand, based on expected refinery runs in March.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) has released a free data add-in for Microsoft Excel for Windows that builds on the well-known Federal Reserve Economic Data (FRED) add-in and allows users to find, download, and update EIA's energy data and FRED's economic data directly in any Excel spreadsheet.
Republished March 17, 2015, 10:00 a.m., text was modified to clarify content.
EIA's most recent Drilling Productivity Report (DPR) indicates a change in the crude oil production growth patterns in three key oil producing regions: the Eagle Ford, Niobrara, and Bakken. The DPR estimates, which were issued on March 9 and cover the months of March and April, include the first projected declines in crude oil production in these regions since publication of the DPR began in October 2013. However, with production gains continuing in other regions, particularly the Permian, overall crude oil production in regions tracked by the DPR rose slightly in March to 5.6 million barrels per day. Total production in the DPR regions in April is expected to be virtually unchanged from its March level.
Residential electricity customers in most areas of the country experienced large increases in retail electricity prices during 2014, with the average U.S. residential price increasing 3.1% over the previous year. The increase represents the highest annual growth rate since 2008. EIA forecasts that prices will increase during 2015, but at a slower pace than in 2014.