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Energy statistics, February 2019

Released: 2019-05-06

In February, electricity generation (+5.5%), natural gas production (+1.0%) and crude oil production (+0.1%) increased, while coal production (-11.1%) declined compared with the same month in 2018. Over the same period, exports of crude oil and equivalent products increased, while exports of natural gas and electricity decreased.

This release is a new product that combines a broad range of energy topics previously published individually in The Daily. Additionally, as of reference month January 2019, the questionnaire for the Monthly Refined Petroleum Products Survey program has been redesigned. For more information, see the note to readers.

Crude oil and equivalent products

In February, production of crude oil and equivalent products edged up 0.1% to 20.2 million cubic metres (127.2 million barrels) compared with the same month a year earlier. February was the second consecutive month in which temporary cuts imposed by the Alberta government continued to affect overall production. During the month, Canadian crude oil production (excluding equivalent products) decreased 0.4% year over year.

Production of crude bitumen declined for the second consecutive month, down 3.6% to 7.6 million cubic metres compared with the same month a year earlier, while heavy crude oil production was also down. The decreases were offset by growth in synthetic crude oil (+3.9%), light and medium crude oil (+0.8%) and equivalent products (+5.4%).

Chart 1  Chart 1: Production, exports and imports of crude oil and equivalent products
Production, exports and imports of crude oil and equivalent products

Alberta produced 16.3 million cubic metres of crude oil and equivalent products in February, edging down 0.1% from the same month a year earlier and accounted for 80.7% of total Canadian production. In February, the Government of Alberta eased production limits which were put in place in January. As a result, the average daily production of crude oil and equivalents increased slightly in February (583.1 thousand cubic metres) from January 2019 (580.5 thousand cubic metres).

Saskatchewan (11.0% of total production) and Newfoundland and Labrador (5.7%) were also key producing provinces in February.

Pipelines in Canada received 17.6 million cubic metres of crude oil and equivalent products from fields and plants in February, down 14.2% compared with the same month in 2018. The vast majority of these receipts (85.4%) originated in Alberta.

Over the same period, pipelines delivered 7.1 million cubic metres of crude oil to Canadian refineries, edging up 0.1%. Almost two-thirds (64.6%) of the total volume were delivered to refineries in the western provinces.

In February, total exports of crude oil and equivalent products increased 0.6% from the same month a year earlier to 15.9 million cubic metres. Exports to the United States via pipelines rose 4.1% year over year to 14.3 million cubic metres. Pipelines were the main mode of transport, accounting for 89.5% of total exports in February. Exports to the United States by other means (including rail, truck and marine) decreased 22.0% to 1.2 million cubic metres, while exports to other countries were also down.

Over the same period, imports of crude oil and equivalent products increased 3.8% to 3.8 million cubic metres.

Refined petroleum products

In February, net production of motor gasoline (which consists of motor gasoline and blending components) totalled 3.5 million cubic metres, while net production of diesel fuel oil was 3.0 million cubic metres. Meanwhile, closing inventories held at refineries, terminals and upgraders were 2.2 million cubic metres of motor gasoline and 1.6 million cubic metres of diesel fuel oil.

Natural gas

Canadian marketable natural gas production totalled 538.3 million gigajoules in February, up 1.0% from the same month a year earlier. Production of natural gas was concentrated in Alberta (68.7%) and British Columbia (29.6%).

Over the same period, natural gas transmission and distribution systems delivered 224.3 million gigajoules to industrial consumers, 112.0 million gigajoules to residential consumers and 92.1 million gigajoules to commercial and institutional consumers.

Chart 2  Chart 2: Canadian monthly natural gas deliveries
Canadian monthly natural gas deliveries

Deliveries of natural gas in Alberta amounted to 197.4 million gigajoules in February. The majority (72.6%) was sent to the industrial sector, which accounted for 33.5% of all natural gas delivered in Canada.

Meanwhile, natural gas transmission and distribution systems delivered 124.3 million gigajoules of natural gas in Ontario. Of this total, 50.9 million gigajoules were delivered to the residential sector, which accounted for 45.4% of deliveries to residential consumers in Canada.

Opening inventory of natural gas held in Canadian storage facilities totalled 751.8 million gigajoules in February. During the month, inventory decreased 19.1% to 608.3 million gigajoules. This was the fourth consecutive monthly decline in inventory as demand for natural gas increases during the winter.

Canadian exports of natural gas by pipeline to the United States declined 4.6% year over year to 244.2 million gigajoules in February.

Over the same period, imports to Canada from the United States by pipeline, which tend to be volatile, increased 46.4% to 106.1 million gigajoules.

Electricity

Electricity generation in Canada increased 5.5% year over year to 58.7 million megawatt-hours (MWh) in February. Renewable generation (including hydro, wind, solar, tidal and others) was up 5.9% to 39.6 million MWh, while electricity generated from combustible fuels amounted to 12.3 million MWh (+12.1%) and nuclear generation totalled 6.8 million MWh (-6.8%).

By generation type, hydro was the single largest contributor to Canada's electricity mix, producing 36.4 million MWh of electricity, up 6.3% from the previous year. Quebec was the largest provincial generator of hydro-electricity in February (19.5 million MWh), followed by British Columbia (6.0 million MWh) and Newfoundland and Labrador (4.2 million MWh).

In February, Alberta was the largest provincial generator of electricity from combustible fuels (6.8 million MWh), followed by Saskatchewan (1.8 million MWh). Meanwhile, the vast majority of nuclear electricity (93.5%) was generated in Ontario, with the remainder produced in New Brunswick.

Chart 3  Chart 3: Electricity generation
Electricity generation

Exports of electricity to the United States amounted to 4.5 million MWh in February, down 1.9% from the same month a year earlier. Quebec was the main exporting province (2.2 million MWh), followed by Ontario (1.3 million MWh). Over the same period, Canada imported 0.9 million MWh of electricity from the United States, with most of the imports going to British Columbia (0.6 million MWh) and Manitoba (0.2 million MWh).

Coal

Canada produced 4.1 million tonnes of coal in February, down 11.1% compared with the same month in 2018. Over the same period, coke plants produced 181.8 thousand tonnes of coke, down 4.3%.

Chart 4  Chart 4: Coal production
Coal production

  Note to readers

As of reference month January 2019, Statistics Canada presents a new consolidated monthly release: Energy statistics. The survey programs which support the new release include:

  • Crude oil and natural gas, supply and disposition (survey number 2198, tables 25-10-0036-01, 25-10-0055-01 and 25-10-0063-01)
  • Pipeline transportation of oil and other liquid petroleum products (survey number 2148, table 25-10-0056-01)
  • Supply and disposition of refined petroleum products (survey number 2150)
  • Natural gas transmission, storage and distribution (survey numbers 2149, 5210 and 5215, tables 25-10-0057-01, 25-10-0058-01 and 25-10-0059-01)
  • Electric power statistics (survey number 2151, tables 25-10-0015-01 and 25-10-0016-01)
  • Coal and coke statistics (survey numbers 2147 and 2003, tables 25-10-0045-01 and 25-10-0046-01).

The tables associated with the above survey programs remain unchanged, although release dates for most tables have changed. Data in these tables are subject to revisions. Definitions, data sources and methods for each survey program remain available by accessing each survey's respective number.

As of reference month January 2019, the Monthly Refined Petroleum Products Survey has been redesigned. The questionnaire content has changed to reflect the evolving refined petroleum industry. Upgraders and petroleum terminals are now included in the survey frame. New variables have been added while other variables have been discontinued. Due to the change in methodology, the current estimates may not be comparable with the estimates available prior to January 2019.

Data are subject to revisions.

Crude oil and natural gas liquids data from January 2017 to January 2019 have been revised.

The energy statistics program uses respondent and administrative data.

Data in this release are not seasonally adjusted.

It takes approximately 100 gigajoules or 2 700 cubic metres of natural gas to heat a new average-sized single detached home in Canada for one year.

A megawatt-hour (or 1,000 kilowatt hours) is equivalent to the amount of electricity used by about 330 homes during one hour.

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; STATCAN.infostats-infostats.STATCAN@canada.ca) or Media Relations (613-951-4636; STATCAN.mediahotline-ligneinfomedias.STATCAN@canada.ca).

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