Last updateThu, 06 May 2021 8pm

U.S. Natural Gas Consumption to Continue Decreasing

The U.S. Energy Information Administration’s April Short-Term Energy Outlook forecasts decreased total U.S. natural gas consumption in 2021 and 2022 following a decline in 2020. Consumption in 2020 was 1.9 billion cubic feet per day (cf/d) lower than the all-time high of 85.1 billion cf/d set in 2019. Total consumption declined as a result of the economic slowdown associated with the COVID-19 pandemic and lower heating demand amid milder temperatures. Although we expect natural gas consumption to continue to fall in 2021 and 2022, changes in sector-level natural gas consumption show different trends than in 2020. 

IEA: Global Energy Demand to Rebound in 2021

As the world enters a second year of the pandemic, the International Energy Agency’s (IEA) annual Global Energy Review assesses the direction energy demand and carbon dioxide emissions are taking in 2021.

Global energy demand is set to increase by 4.6% in 2021, more than offsetting the 4% contraction in 2020 and pushing demand 0.5% above 2019 levels. Almost 70% of the projected increase in global energy demand is in emerging markets and developing economies, where demand is set to rise to 3.4% above 2019 levels. Energy use in advanced economies is on course to be 3% below pre-Covid levels. 

BP Building New Network of Pipes, Other Infrastructure

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that BP “plans to spend about $1.3 billion to build a massive network of pipes and other infrastructure to collect and capture natural gas produced as a byproduct from oil wells in the Permian Basin of Texas and New Mexico. It plans to announce Monday that it will eliminate routine flaring of natural gas in the oil field by 2025.”

“We will be producing oil and gas for decades, but it will be a certain kind of oil and gas,” Dave Lawler, chairman of BP America Inc., is quoted as saying. “It’s a highly profitable barrel and it’s a responsibly produced barrel.” 

S&P: Oil and Gas M&A Activity Surges

Oil and gas M&A deal-making in the first quarter of 2021 rebounded from year-ago levels as supermajors divested assets and corporate consolidation continued, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence data.

The industry announced 28 more whole-company and minority-stake deals in first-quarter 2021 than in the first quarter of 2020: 117 deals compared to 89. In the same period, the combined value of deals soared from $3.86 billion to $26.37 billion. The number of announced asset transactions fell slightly from 89 to 86, but their aggregate value climbed nearly $10 billion to $11.38 billion. 

Haynesville Gas Output Approaching All-Time High

Given the Haynesville shale's strategic proximity to the U.S. Gulf Coast, a bullish outlook for LNG export demand this summer is giving producers there another good reason to grow output.

According to a recent forecast from S&P Global Platts Analytics, U.S. terminals should continue to operate at over 90% capacity utilization through the summer. Last summer, record-low global gas prices prompted many exporters to defer cargo-liftings, slowing feedgas demand and ultimately shutting-in some U.S. liquefaction capacity. 

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