EIA Predicts Decreasing Demand for Natural Gas, But CO2 Emissions Increasing

by Duane Nichols on August 25, 2021

Carbon Dioxide Mainly From Fossil Fuels Around the World

U.S. Natural Gas Production Projected to Rise, But the Demand May Fall for 2021

From an Article of Reuters News Service, August 24, 2021

(Reuters) – U.S. natural gas production will rise in 2021 after falling last year due to coronavirus demand destruction, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said in its Short Term Energy Outlook (STEO) on Tuesday.

EIA projected dry gas production will rise to 92.15 billion cubic feet per day (bcfd) in 2021 and 94.88 bcfd in 2022 from 91.35 bcfd in 2020. That compares with an all-time high of 93.06 bcfd in 2019.

The agency also projected gas consumption would fall to 82.46 bcfd in 2021 before rising to 83.78 bcfd in 2022 from 83.25 bcfd in 2020. That compares with a record high of 85.15 bcfd in 2019.

If the outlook is correct, 2022 would mark the first time consumption falls for two years in a row since 2006.

The EIA’s 2021 supply projection in August was lower than its July forecast of 92.55 bcfd, while its August demand projection was higher than its July forecast of 82.32 bcfd.

The agency forecast U.S. liquefied natural gas exports would reach 9.48 bcfd in 2021 and 10.15 bcfd in 2022, up from a record 6.53 bcfd in 2020. That is lower than its July forecast of 9.56 bcfd in 2021.

The EIA projected U.S. coal production will rise to 607 million short tons in 2021 before sliding to 601 million short tons in 2022 from 535 million short tons in 2020, its lowest since 1965, as power plants burn more coal due to a forecast increase in gas prices.

The EIA projected carbon emissions from burning fossil fuels will rise to 4.887 billion tonnes in 2021 and 4.933 billion tonnes in 2022 as power generators burn more coal. That is up from 4.571 billion tonnes in 2020, which was the lowest since 1983.


See also: U.S. Energy Information Agency — EIA Natural Gas Weekly Update

U.S. domestic natural gas consumption decreased this week, but overall demand grew in response to higher natural gas deliveries to LNG export facilities. Total U.S. consumption of natural gas fell by 0.2%, or 0.1 Bcf/d, compared with the previous report week. Natural gas used in power generation and the residential and commercial sectors decreased 0.2% and 1.0%, respectively, even with above-average temperatures across the West. Industrial sector consumption increased by 0.3% week over week.

Natural gas pipeline exports to Mexico decreased 3.6% or 0.2 Bcf/d, and natural gas deliveries to U.S. LNG export facilities (LNG pipeline receipts) increased to an average of 10.7 Bcf/d, or 0.90 Bcf/d higher than last week, leading to overall natural gas demand increasing by 0.6% or 0.6 Bcf/d.

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