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U.S. Producing More Oil Than Any Other Nation

The United States recently set another record for crude oil production, reaching an average of 12.9 billion barrels per day (b/d) in 2023, the sixth year in a row that production has increased.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), in its recent International Energy Statistics publication, calculated that the U.S. is producing more crude than any nation at any time. The 2023 record broke the previous U.S. and global record of 12.3 million b/d, which was set in 2019. It appears that the record production will continue, as the monthly production in December 2023 reached 13.3 million b/d.

The record production may come as a surprise to some, given that the Biden administration has put an emphasis on transitioning away from fossil fuels in order to meet climate goals. However, the global economy is demanding more energy, with the International Energy Agency recently raising its global demand growth forecast for 2024.

The increasing U.S. supply, which is coming primarily from the Permian basin in Texas, has been offsetting cuts by OPEC+ nations, including Saudi Arabia and Russia, which were meant to keep oil prices high. Oil prices have remained below $90 a barrel but have recently shown some upward movement.

At the same time the U.S. is producing record amounts of oil, it is also setting new records for oil exports. In 2023, U.S. oil exports averaged 4.1 million b/d, setting a new record, the EIA said. Most of those exports have gone to Europe, Asia, and the Pacific Islands. Europe became the top importer in 2023, following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, which disrupted the region’s energy supply. At the same time, China’s imports of U.S. crude almost doubled in 2023, as that economy continues to reopen following COVID-19 restrictions.

The EIA said that the U.S. crude oil production record is unlikely to be broken by any other country in the next few years, because none has reached a production capacity of 13 billion b/d.

As the demand for energy increases at the same time that funding for clean energy projects is helping to fast-track those technologies, the U.S. energy landscape will have to take into account these competing interests and reach a consensus on the energy mix.


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