US Boosts 2015 Oil Forecast As Shale Powers Push To 10 MMbpd
NEW YORK, Sept 9 (Reuters) - The U.S. government on Tuesday jacked up its forecast for oil production next year by 250,000 barrels per day (bpd) as the boom in shale oil drilling continues to confound expectations of slower growth.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration now expects domestic output to rise to 9.53 million bpd, growing by around 1 million bpd for a third consecutive year, according to its latest monthly short-term energy outlook. A month ago the EIA had predicted output growth would slow in 2015 to 800,000 bpd.
The U.S. shale boom has allowed producers to unlock thousands of barrels of reserves, putting the United States on course to become the largest producer of oil globally, which would dramatically reduce its dependence on imports.
"Rising monthly crude oil production, which will approach 10 million barrels a day in late 2015, will help cut U.S. fuel imports next year to just 21 percent of domestic demand, the lowest level since 1968," EIA Administrator Adam Sieminski said.
The EIA also raised forecasts for 2014 U.S. output to 8.53 million bpd from the previous estimate of 8.46 million bpd. It said U.S. growth would account for 91 percent of the 1.3 million bpd rise in global oil output next year.
U.S. crude oil production has reversed years of decline thanks to the development of shale resources, which have boosted output by more than 70 percent in six years. Production averaged 8.6 million bpd in August, the highest level since July 1986, EIA data showed.
Total U.S. consumption of petroleum and other liquids was expected to dip to 18.92 million bpd in 2014 year on year, down 0.2 percent from a year earlier.
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