NEB says Canadian synthetic crude production could triple

The National Energy Board reports that the volume of synthetic crude oil and bitumen produced in Canada will nearly triple within a decade if all of the projects currently underway or planned are completed. NEB said by 2010 the industry would produce about 1.9 million b/d from oilsands deposits in northern Alberta and Saskatchewan.


CALGARY�The National Energy Board reports Canadian synthetic crude oil and bitumen production would nearly triple within a decade if all of the projects underway or planned are eventually completed.

NEB said by 2010 the industry would produce about 1.9 million b/d from oilsands deposits in northern Alberta and Saskatchewan.

The board said planned projects have a value of $34 billion (Can.), but not all may proceed because of fluctuating oil prices. It estimates recoverable reserves at 308 billion bbl, about 12% of the bitumen in place. The board assumes a price of $18 (US)/bbl for light, sweet crude.

Because conventional heavy oil and light crude production will decline, NEB said oilsands could account for more than 50% of Canadian oil production by 2015. It is now about 27%.

The report also said that a shortage of pentanes, used for blending bitumen, could occur as early as 2005 and could restrain bitumen production.

It also said planning is needed to avoid serious environmental damage from oilsands development.

More in Production Operations