Updated June 2021
Within this section
Production: Production of crude oil in 2020 decreased by 12 per cent from 2019, averaging 67.4 thousand cubic metres per day (103 m3/d) or 424.2 thousand barrels per day (103 bbl/d). Increases to the number of wells placed on production over the forecast period will not offset declines in production. Crude oil accounted for less than 15 per cent of total marketable oil production in Alberta, which also includes bitumen production.
Number of wells: The number of wells placed on production in 2020 decreased by 39 per cent because of low oil prices. Producers have been more disciplined with their investments, shifting capital spending programs away from new growth wells while reducing debt and focusing returns to investors, buying back shares, and paying dividends.
The number of new wells placed on production is projected to increase from 1061 in 2020 to 1980 by 2030, with the majority of wells drilled targeting light oil in the Cardium, Montney, Viking, and Mannville Group Formations.
Demand: In 2020, Alberta refinery demand for total oil (upgraded and nonupgraded bitumen plus crude oil and pentanes plus) was 80.7 103 m3/d (507.8 103 bbl/d). Crude oil accounted for 22 per cent of total Alberta demand, at 17.4 103 m3/d (109.2 103 bbl/d). The remaining oil produced was removed from the province. Without new refineries or significant expansions, Alberta demand is expected to remain relatively unchanged with consistent refinery throughputs and removals projected to increase throughout the forecast period.