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Energy supply and demand, 2012

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Released: 2013-12-10

Primary energy production in Canada increased 3.3% between 2011 and 2012 to 17,335 petajoules. This followed a 3.6% increase between 2010 and 2011.

One petajoule equals roughly the amount of energy required to operate the Montréal subway system for one year.

Crude oil accounted for the largest proportion of primary energy production in Canada in 2012, at 42.9%. This was followed by natural gas (34.9%), primary electricity (9.9%), coal (8.6%) and gas plant natural gas liquids (3.6%).

It was the third consecutive year in which crude oil accounted for the largest share of production. Until 2010, natural gas had represented the largest share.

Exports increase and imports decrease

Just over 58% of primary energy produced in Canada is destined for export markets, primarily the United States.

Exports of Canadian energy and energy products increased 5.3% in 2012 to 11,234 petajoules.

Canada exported 73.5% of its crude oil production in 2012, 56.5% of its marketable natural gas and 23.3% of its refined petroleum products.

Imports of energy decreased 0.8% from 2011 to 3,709 petajoules in 2012.

Crude oil accounted for 44.6% of imports, followed by natural gas (32.7%), refined petroleum products (13.4%) and coal (7.4%). Together, these products and commodities made up 98.1% of energy-related imports.

Energy consumption down

Canada's energy consumption decreased 0.6% to 8,179 petajoules in 2012, following a 7.5% increase in 2011. Energy consumption had declined in both 2008 and 2009 before growing in 2010 and 2011.

Energy consumption increased in total mining and oil and gas extraction (+13.3%) and the construction sector (+3.6%). All other sectors showed decreases in energy consumption, with the largest declines in forestry and logging and support activities (-6.2%) and the residential sector (-5.1%). Energy consumption in the manufacturing and transportation sectors declined 1.7% and 0.5% respectively.

Refined petroleum products (38.1%) were the main source of energy consumed in Canada in 2012, followed by natural gas (30.8%) and primary electricity (22.5%).

Energy consumption shifting across the country

Ontario, Alberta and Quebec continued to account for most of the energy consumed in Canada. In 2012, their combined share of total energy consumption was 74.7%.

Alberta has been increasing its share of energy consumption in Canada since 2010, while Quebec and Ontario have seen theirs decline.

In 2012, six provinces recorded decreases in energy consumption compared with 2011. Nova Scotia (-10.7%) led the declines, followed by Newfoundland and Labrador (-9.9%), Prince Edward Island (-7.6%), New Brunswick (-6.0%), Ontario (-3.3%) and Quebec (-2.8%).

Conversely, energy consumption increased in four provinces in 2012 compared with 2011. Manitoba increased its energy consumption by 5.7%, Alberta by 4.7%, Saskatchewan by 1.5% and British Columbia by 0.8%.

  Note to readers

Primary energy production corresponds to the production of crude oil, natural gas, primary electricity, total coal and gas plant natural gas liquids.

Data for 2011 have been revised.

Contact information

For more information, or to enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality of this release, contact us (toll-free 1-800-263-1136; 514-283-8300; infostats@statcan.gc.ca) or Media Relations (613-951-4636; statcan.mediahotline-ligneinfomedias.statcan@canada.ca).

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