Boom: Texas Oil Exports Exceed Imports for First Time Ever

Oil rigs extract petroleum as the price of crude oil rises to nearly $120 per barrel, prompting oil companies to reopen numerous wells across the nation that were considered tapped out and unprofitable decades ago when oil sold for one-fifth the price or less, on April 25, 2008 in the …
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Exports of crude oil from the Texas Gulf Coast exceeded imports for the first time on record earlier this year, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).

This week, the EIA reported that Texas reached this milestone in April and, then, increased output in May, impacting the total of U.S. crude oil exports.

In April, Texas oil exports from the Houston-Galveston port district exceeded imports by 15,000 barrels per day (bpd). In May, Texas exports over imports substantially rose to 470,000 bdp while total U.S. crude oil exports reflected a record high of 2 million bpd. Since mid-2017, the Houston-Galveston port district accounted for more than half of all U.S. crude oil exports and that share was a stunning 70 percent during May.

This Gulf Coast district includes the port of Houston and ports from Galveston to Corpus Christi. The EIA said the majority of the crude oil exports from the Houston-Galveston region went to China, Italy, Canada, and the United Kingdom. So far, in 2018, the Houston-Galveston port district exported about 30,000 bpd more crude oil on average to Canada than it imported from the country. In June and July, the port’s exports to China averaged 300,000 bpd, according to oilprice.com.

The EIA data showed ongoing efforts to expand crude oil infrastructure at Houston and Corpus Christi ports resulted in higher export flows. Port Arthur, which includes ports in Sabine, Beaumont, and Orange, Texas, also saw significant crude oil export volumes recently. The Port Arthur district accounted for roughly a quarter of all U.S. crude oil exports since the middle of 2017. However, the governmental energy agency noted, that despite infrastructure improvements, crude oil export capacity remains limited on the Gulf Coast because most ports are unable to load larger crude oil vessels. Still, from June 2017 to June 2018, Texas experienced an impressive 27 percent increase in oil production, according to the Texas Alliance of Energy Producers.

Texas, already considered a force among the world’s oil producers, is poised to double its output to reach 5.4 million barrels per day (mbd) by 2023 and become the third largest oil producer behind Saudi Arabia and Russia. In June, IHS Markit, a leading international business information provider, forecasted a “stunning” level of growth for the energy-rich Permian Basin located in West Texas and southeastern New Mexico. HIS Markit anticipated that Permian Basin oil output will comprise more than 60 percent of the next global production growth over the next five years.

Breitbart Texas reported:

The outlook expects this growth will come from nearly 41,000 new wells and $308 billion in upstream spending from 2018 to 2023. Analysts expect the region’s production of natural gas and natural gas liquids (NGLs) will double with natural gas reaching 15 billion cubic feet per day (bcf/d) and natural gas liquids, hitting 1.7 mbd. IHS Markit predicts that Permian crude oil pipeline capacity will expand to 2.5 mbd and natural gas pipeline capacity will reach 8 bcf/d.

Recently, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) announced another Texas oil and gas powerhouse, the Eagle Ford shale formation, sat on top of billions of barrels of untapped oil and natural gas. The oil rich land stretches over a wide area from the Texas-Mexico border to the west, across portions of southern and eastern Texas, and spills over the Texas-Louisiana border.

The USGS called this shale formation “one of the most prolific continuous accumulations of oil and gas in the United States.” It is the second largest U.S. shale play behind the Permian Basin. Breitbart Texas reported the feds estimated the shale fields, contain approximately 8.5 billion barrels of oil, 66 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, and 1.9 billion barrels of natural gas liquids, that, so far, remain undiscovered and are technically recoverable resources.

Follow Merrill Hope, a member of the original Breitbart Texas team, on Twitter.

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