EIA: UK's Gas Production Down; Imports Up
The American Energy Information Administration (EIA) has said that UK gas production has fallen significantly in the past 12 years, with monthly production dropping from 350 billion cubic feet (bcf) per month in 2000 to 200 bcf in 2011.
Gas production continues to drop dramatically across the United Kingdom, the agency said, with a 22 per cent drop on production between 2010 and 2011 alone.
The EIA says this reduction has much to do with the drop in reserves seen in the UK. Typically, 85 per cent of gas which came from offshore fields--the bulk of the UK's domestic production--came from fields which had been in production for at least 10 years. Even older fields accounted for a large minority of offshore production, the EIA said, with 39 per cent of offshore gas coming from fields in production since 1991 or earlier.
Subsequently, the agency said, reliance on imports saw a huge increase from 2001, especially from Norway. In 2001, only 36 bcf of gas came from Norwegian imports; by 2010, that figure had grown to 878 bcf.
The UK continues to forge a deeper relationship with Norway, signalled by the recent signing of the Norway-UK Energy Partnership for Sustainable Growth. That agreement, which was signed between UK and Norwegian Prime Ministers David Cameron and Jens Stoltenberg earlier this month, sees both countries agreeing to long-term cooperation on energy.
The EIA also said that the UK's LNG reliance was steadily beginning to increase, since the first LNG terminal, the Isle of Grain terminal, was first opened in 2005. By last year, LNG imports had grown to 900 bcf a year, with 80 per cent of that supply coming from Qatar.
The agency says that LNG now accounts for up to 20 per cent of gas demand in the UK, providing up to 4 bcf of gas a day to the UK.