U.S. Set to Become Global Leader in Oil Production

The U.S. may take over as the world’s leading oil producer this year and continue to dominate crude growth for at least the next five years, the the International Energy Agency said Monday.

The problem is that global energy investments outside of U.S. onshore shale aren’t keeping pace with worldwide oil demand growth trends and crude shortages could eventually emerge, said IEA Executive Director Fatih Birol while speaking at the CERAWeek by IHS Markit conference in downtown Houston. Oil and gas spending internationally is yet to rebound from the 2014 bust in oil prices.

“Are we seeing enough (global) investments to provide the boosts?,” he said. ” Our answer is absolutely not.”

The world isn’t going to hit peak oil demand in the next few years, so more investment in production is needed, especially since about 3 million barrels a day are taken offline each year from as mature fields dry up, he said.

The U.S. projected to add more than 3.5 million barrels a day through 2023, the IEA said. Brazil, Canada, Norway, Iraq and Iran also are increasing production, but much more slowly, although some of that is offset by declines in Venezuela and other nations.

The IEA isn’t projecting much crude production growth from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries in part because of agreement to limit production to help boost global oil prices.

That’s presumably good news for Houston-area energy companies hoping to churn our more oil and gas from Texas and beyond. [Read More]

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