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US Petroleum Imports in 2009 Down 9.2%, Domestic Production Up 7%

US import levels of crude and products in 2009 lagged prior year levels, with full-year 2009 imports of 11.7 million barrels per day, down 9.2%, according to figures from the American Petroleum Institute (API). For full-year 2009, crude oil production was up 7% over the prior year, averaging 5.3 million barrels per day.

December 2009 imports of 10.7 million barrels per day were down 15% year-on-year and fourth quarter imports of 10.9 million barrels per day were down 15.4%.

Total petroleum deliveries (a measure of demand) for December inched up 0.6% from December 2008, reflecting an improved economy and possibly increased demand from colder weather. December deliveries, which averaged 19.3 million barrels per day, outpaced both four-quarter average deliveries of 19.0 million barrels per day and full-year average deliveries of 18.7 million barrels per day.

Gasoline deliveries followed a similar pattern, with December deliveries, at an average 9.1 million barrels per day, rising 2.3% from December 2008. Gasoline deliveries also were up 1.1% for the fourth quarter, and up 0.3% for full-year 2009.

Clearly, petroleum demand is mirroring the economic recovery. We are seeing December demand figures stronger than fourth quarter figures and fourth quarter figures stronger than full-year figures. But the data also indicates that the recovery still has a distance to go, particularly if you look at ultra-low sulfur diesel.

—API Chief Economist John Felmy

Deliveries of ultra-low sulfur diesel, the type required for on-highway use, were down 11% in December 2009, compared with December 2008.



Very good news! Energy Independence For America!


Unfortunately, it reflects a weak economy probably more than energy independence. But the increase in domestic production is a good sign.


When we reduce oil consumption in general with an expanding economy we will have something. HEV, PHEV, EV, CNG, FFV, big rig improvements...all of it will help.


7% increase that bring us to 5.3 millions barrels a day? many people know that US was producing 10millions barrels a day at its peak in 1970?


I do, that is why we were 1/3 dependent on imported oil then and 2/3 dependent now and use more than we did then.

Will S

Yes, this is seemingly good news, but don't expect the rise to last very long. DO expect, however, to pay more for gas in the near future;


The us has a lot of heavy and very heavy crude thats just a bit too spendy to extract but will be extracted as prices rise. Now that the tech for very heavy oil refining has come about we can expect the amount of us oil to increase over the next few decades.

Will S

wintermane, please detail how much "heavy" and "very heavy" crude the US possesses as proven reserves. Links to reliable data sources will help you argue your point.


"In the United States, heavy hydrocarbon deposits are estimated to be more than eight times that of the nation's remaining reserves of conventional crude oil."

Will S

"Reliable" data sources please, not some investment scam website. And the non-linked references on that page are 2 decades old, clearly far out of date.

Stan Peterson

I thouhgt this might be of some interest to everybody.

Country: UK
Author: Alex Lawler

LONDON - Oil use in rich industrialized countries will never return to 2006 and 2007 levels because of more fuel efficiency and the use of alternatives, the chief economist of the International Energy Agency said on Thursday.

The bold prediction, while made previously by some analysts, is significant because the IEA advises 28 countries on energy policy and its oil demand forecasts are closely watched by traders and policymakers.

"When we look at the OECD countries -- the U.S., Europe and Japan -- I think the level of demand that we have seen in 2006 and 2007, we will never see again," Fatih Birol told Reuters in a telephone interview.

"There may be some zig zags up and down but as a trend I think it will be a downward trend in terms of oil consumption."

Flat or declining OECD demand may ease any strain on oil prices caused by ever-growing consumption in emerging economies. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries will account for 53 percent of world demand in 2010, according to the IEA.

In its January 15 monthly Oil Market Report, the IEA forecast OECD demand would average 45.48 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2010, unchanged from 2009. World demand is forecast at 86.33 million bpd, up from 84.89 million in 2009.

Birol said the economic crisis had played a role in curbing OECD demand but the main reasons were more efficient cars and the increasing use of electricity and gas instead of oil in areas outside transport.

"It did play a role. The recession had a one-off effect," said Birol, who spoke to Reuters from the sidelines of the Davos conference of business leaders. "But the main factors are structural."


BP Plc Chief Executive Tony Hayward, also in Davos, said on Thursday demand for gasoline would not return to the rate of three years ago in established markets.

"None of us will sell more gasoline than we sold in 2007," he said, referring to developed markets. "That's, however, being offset by very strong ... markets of the East and particularly China."

In China, 13 million cars were sold last year, he said.

Interest in peak demand has grown following the surge in oil prices to a record high near $150 a barrel in 2008, a decline in world demand because of the economic crisis and efforts to combat climate change.

Reuters reported a year ago, citing analysts including the former chief economist at BP Plc, that oil demand may never return to growth in the United States, Europe and parts of Asia.

While non-OECD demand is expected to keep world oil use on a growing trend, some believe global consumption could reach a high point in the next decades as a result of policies to tackle climate change.

Saudi Arabia, which as the world's largest oil exporter has a lot to lose from a decline in oil demand, is worried about future consumption, its lead climate negotiator told Reuters earlier this month.

Muhammed al-Sabban, head of the Saudi delegation to UN talks on climate change, said the possibility that oil demand might peak this decade was a "serious problem" for Saudi Arabia.

Birol did not give any timeframe for any peak global oil demand, but said a move toward more efficient vehicles in developing markets could dampen the expected emerging country growth.

"If there is a transformation in the transport sector, it may also slow down the growth substantially."

"Advanced-car technologies ... are very strong pushed in many countries."

I know that all the markets of oil except for Transportation,have stopped growing, stabilized, and are now in decline.
For example how any know that US industry consumes less oil today than it did in 1970 to produce a GDP mor ethna twice as large?

When the Transportaion market stabilizes,as these analysts contend maybe happening, in the developed world, oil demand will start to decline.

Even withan artificially set basic Price, oil Prices are still set at the margin, but since the Price is so phony, bearing no relation to cost, it pays to cheat.

Oil Spike induced recessions cut demand by 2-4% before, yet they all caused oil Price collapses. Is OPEC on its last legs? Or in Churchill's words: "Its not the End, or even the Beginning of the End. But it might be the End of the Beginning".

Henry Gibson

It is long past time to install coal to liguid factories at all of the opencast coal mines in the US and all other oil importing countries. An automatic import duty of $35 will make the domestic production of fuel profitable. The duty can be used to support energy and other programs. The profits will increase when the capital costs of the new plants are amortized. CO2 capture and use will be easily be paid for by avoiding the cost of imported oil later on and can be used to increase production of local oil and natural gas. ..HG..

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