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Page added on December 15, 2017

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Fracking drives US oil exports to record high


The world’s largest oil consumer exported more hydrocarbons than ever before in 2017 and shows no signs of slowing down.

You name it – crude oil, gasoline, diesel, propane and even liquefied natural gas – all were shipped abroad by the US at a record pace.

While the surge comes many years after the shale boom started, it can be traced straight back to the growth of horizontal drilling and fracking.

US exports are poised to expand even further, as the fear of peak oil supply has all but vanished just as a new demand threat emerges in the form of electric vehicles.

Americans are expected to end the year pumping oil out of the ground at rates unseen since the early 1970s. More and more of it is going overseas, giving OPEC a headache as the group restrains its own output.

Last year the US tested the export waters after a nearly four-decade-old ban was removed. But this year, purchases of US light, sweet crude have skyrocketed as pipeline and dock infrastructure was built out and the wider price spread between Brent and West Texas Intermediate crude coaxed more cargoes abroad.

Canada, once the only regular buyer of US crude, finds itself competing with refiners in Europe and Asia.

China’s appetite for American oil is voracious: in April, China bought more than Canada did for the first time.

“It’s pretty amazing, really,” said Matt Smith, ClipperData’s director of commodity research. “You learn to never say never in this market.”

Of all the emerging trade flows this year, crude deliveries into Europe and Asia are most surprising, according to Smith. And if the price of European oil stays suspended into the New Year – a good possibility after the Forties oil pipeline was shut this week to repair a crack – US exports will continue hold above 1 million barrels a day.

“The US has fully integrated itself into the global market,” Smith said. “You have US crude going into Europe, and European crude heading elsewhere because the US is selling crude into its own backyard.”

The growth of US gasoline and diesel exports was more subtle this year, mostly filling the gaps left as refiners in Latin America weren’t up to the task of meeting the region’s growing thirst for fuel.

The Midwest is running at bonkers levels.


Refiners in the middle of the US were pumping out fuel at a record pace, leaving a surplus of refined products along the Gulf Coast ready to be shipped to eager Latin American buyers, according to Mason Hamilton, an analyst with the US Energy Information Administration.

“The Midwest is running at bonkers levels,” Hamilton said. Weekly preliminary government data show total gasoline exports hit a record 1.21 million barrels a day in November.

July was a banner month for American refiners, who processed crude and exported distillate fuel at a record clip, according to monthly data. The strong demand from Latin America will continue into 2018, according to Hamilton.

Talk about alphabet soup. Exports of oft-confused natural gas liquids and liquefied natural gas exports chugged along to records as well. NGLs like propane and butane are in high demand around the world to feed plastics-making plants, heat homes and stoves. China and Japan emerged as the biggest propane buyers in 2017.

LNG shipments are just warming up. The sole export terminal in the US, operated by Cheniere Energy, hit new highs this year after its capacity was expanded. Mexico, where demand for natural gas increased following energy sector reforms, led all countries in 2017, followed by South Korea and China. LNG is even reaching the Middle East, typically a top supplier of the fuel.

“It’s like selling ice to the Eskimos,” ClipperData’s Smith said.

NZ Herald

22 Comments on "Fracking drives US oil exports to record high"

  1. Ghung on Fri, 15th Dec 2017 11:41 am 

    I must have missed the part where the US is still a net importer of oil; around 4 MMBD last week.

  2. Apneaman on Fri, 15th Dec 2017 11:49 am 

    Guy sounds like he creamed hi jeans. As excited as clog talking about Nazi’s 2.0

  3. CAM on Fri, 15th Dec 2017 11:53 am 

    Actually the US is a net importer of about 7.5 mbd, about half from OPEC. According to the US EIA the US uses about 20 mbd of oil and produces (extracts) about 8-9 mbd.

    It appears really doubtful that the US will ever produce enough oil to fill its own needs, unless perhaps the entire economy collapses.

  4. yellowcanoe on Fri, 15th Dec 2017 2:20 pm 

    The article also overlooks the fact that the US is still a net importer of natural gas. Those LNG exports require that more natural gas be imported from Canada.

  5. MASTERMIND on Fri, 15th Dec 2017 4:45 pm 

    The US is still the largest country that imports oil. Only the entire EU imports more.

  6. MASTERMIND on Fri, 15th Dec 2017 4:45 pm 

    The US has imported 47% of its oil on average this year according to the EIA.

  7. GregT on Fri, 15th Dec 2017 5:17 pm 

    More Bloomborg BS.

    Resistance is futile.

  8. Makati1 on Fri, 15th Dec 2017 5:34 pm 

    MM, do you read what you post? “The US is still the largest country that imports oil.”

    “China is now the world’s largest net importer of petroleum and other liquid fuels”

    “China Has Become the World’s Biggest Crude Oil Importer for the First Time”

    “China Now World’s Largest Oil Importer; Effect on Global Market”

    “Peer testing” takes time and is ALWAYS old news.

  9. Apneaman on Fri, 15th Dec 2017 5:59 pm 

    Oh what joy. What better occasion to feel proud and patriotic that we sucked more cancer juice out of the earth.

    The country must be prospering mightily eh?

    A journey through a land of extreme poverty: welcome to America

    The UN’s Philip Alston is an expert on deprivation – and he wants to know why 41m Americans are living in poverty. The Guardian joined him on a special two-week mission into the dark heart of the world’s richest nation

    This is a good example of how magical thinking works. Take any piece of good news, real or otherwise, and hype it fucking hell and back and ignore the big picture.

    Trump should sign into legislation a new national holiday – Fracking Day.

    Fracking Day – fire works, coal rolling and giant sofa burning bon fires in the middle of the street to roast wieners on.

  10. Makati1 on Fri, 15th Dec 2017 6:39 pm 

    Ap. The US is in what I call The Great Leveling. It has been since about 1970. The One World financial system and government cannot happen until ALL nations are on an equal, i.e., 3rd world level. It is speeding up in America, Europe, Australia and other Western wannabees.

    Such ‘leveling’ is covered up by the US MSM propaganda machine. The American serfs are bombarded with fluff and bullshit, diverting them from actually thinking or acting. Few of them get out of the box/boiling pot and see what’s is happening to their country. Those who do get a glimpse just deny it or turn to drugs, alcohol and/or guns.

    I watch the speed of decline increasing day by day. Nothing I can do except warn my friends and family to prepare. Some do. Some don’t. Some even say I am wrong and deny. So be it. Their decision.

  11. MASTERMIND on Fri, 15th Dec 2017 8:01 pm 


    You are right about the media brainwashing..Can you believe we are technically in another Great Depression and consumer confidence is at a 17 year high..(assuming that is true)..If you want to know how the fake news does it. They never talk about the yearly GDP. They cherry pick separate quarters like the last two quarters grew at 3 percent and the news has been hyping it up to no end. Even my little town news did it the other night. They don’t tell you that the first quarter grew at 1 percent..And they hype up the stock market and unemployment rate as evidence the economy is doing great. That is how they do it they just igonre the most important statistic which is yearly economic growth.

  12. Wolfie52 on Fri, 15th Dec 2017 8:10 pm 

    Wow, same trolls…really, I visit once every 3 months and it is always the same people arguing/agreeing with each other.

    OK guys, move out of your parents basement an find a hobby…wow #sad

  13. onlooker on Fri, 15th Dec 2017 8:25 pm 

    The WORLD ECONOMY is a sham existing on gambling oops investing, debt and worthless funny money

  14. GregT on Fri, 15th Dec 2017 9:33 pm 

    “Wow, same trolls…really, I visit once every 3 months and it is always the same people arguing/agreeing with each other.”

    Ever thought about not visiting anymore? Nobody asked you to drop by.

  15. Makati1 on Fri, 15th Dec 2017 9:38 pm 

    Right on, MM. I do not trust ANYTHING that comes out of the US MSM, especially government sources, and a I doubt a lot from other sources. I always check to see who is signing the paycheck for a hint of the spin.

  16. Makati1 on Fri, 15th Dec 2017 9:43 pm 

    Wolfie, if you payed attention, you would know that most of us are retired or near that age. As for our differing views, that can be called freedom of speech and/or experience in our areas of thought, living and education. Seven billion plus humans = seven billion plus views of the world. Adjust or don’t bother to visit.

  17. MASTERMIND on Fri, 15th Dec 2017 10:25 pm 

    The Great Oil Swindle “You’re really going to hate gasoline $10 a gallon (yes, it could get that ugly)”

    This world will burn!

  18. Makati1 on Fri, 15th Dec 2017 10:39 pm 

    MM, it can go to $100 per gallon. And should. Get the crash and reset over-with while there are still some resources left to rebuild a lower lifestyle.

  19. rockman on Sat, 16th Dec 2017 1:27 pm 

    Not sure why folks get so excited over oil exports. According to the EIA in 2016 the US exported 216 million bbls of oil. Same year the US exported 1.7 BILLION BBLS of refinery products. Same year the US imported 2.9 BILLION BBLS of oil. Same year the US imported 800 million bbls of refinery products. So total bbls petroleum exported: 1.9 billion bbls. Total petroleum imported: 3.7 billion bbls. So we were still a net importer of 1.8 billion bbls of oil + refinery products. Or about 4.9 million bbls/day. Or bottom line in $’s: the US runs a huge deficit in petroleum

    Natural Gas: at its peak in 2007 the US was a net NG importer of 3,800 bcf/yr. In 2016 it was a net importer of 671 bcf/yr. Latest monthly: Sept 2017…19 bcf/mth. Projected in 12 months: too erratic over the last 12 months to predict. Might be a small net exporter or a small net importer.

  20. Boat on Sat, 16th Dec 2017 6:04 pm 


    Wow you fact checked China imports and were correct. MM was wrong. Now tell me what is wrong with Cams post and continue to amaze me. Your sneaking in some oily research. Make Mr proud.

  21. Anonymous on Sun, 17th Dec 2017 11:43 am 

    Rock: You are right that products exports are much more massive. This graph shows that even in SEP, crude was only about a quarter of crude and products exports combined.

    Yet, crude exports are not tiny. They are growing both in percent and amount. A million bpd is a number the world notices. For that matter, it is EQUAL to all exports (crude and products) prior to about 2007.

    So, yes, the product story is totally under-reported. But crude exports themselves are not tiny.

  22. Anonymous on Sun, 17th Dec 2017 11:44 am 

    Link to graph mentioned:

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