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Oil sands growth to push Canadian crude production to about 4.7M bpd in 2025, up 67% from 2010; in situ production takes lead in 2016

Canadian oil sands & conventional production. Source: CAPP. Click to enlarge.

Oil sands growth will drive Canadian crude oil production to about 4.7 million barrels per day by 2025 from 2.8 million bpd in 2010—a 67% increase—according to the latest forecast from the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP). This is about 401,000 b/d higher than previously forecast, due primarily to the higher conventional production and the inclusion of some additional in situ projects that were previously put on hold.

The forecast sees oil sands production rising from 1.5 million barrels per day (actual) in 2010 up to 3.7 million barrels per day in 2025. Conventional production is seen dropping slightly from 2010’s 0.9 million barrels per day to 0.7 mbpd in 2010. Pentanes/condensate contribution remains constant at 0.1 mpbd, while the offshore contribution drops from 0.3 mbpd in 2010 to 0.1 mbpd in 2025.

Canadian and US crude oil pipelines—all proposals. Source: CAPP. Click to enlarge.

The forecast also breaks out oil sands production by extraction method (mining and drilling) and tracks the amount of domestic upgrading. In 2010, 47% of raw bitumen was derived from in situ projects and 53% from mining operations. Starting in 2016, production from in situ projects will account for the majority of Canadian oil sands production.

Expanding access to existing markets in the US and diversifying into Asian markets are important to enable this production growth and to ensure Canadian producers receive competitive prices for their products.

—Greg Stringham, CAPP vice-president of markets and oil sands

Growth Case: Western Canada oil sands & conventional production. Source: CAPP. Click to enlarge.

While the economic downturn in 2009 saw many oil sands projects deferred, an improved investment climate, more robust commodity prices and market demand for Canadian crude provided the stimulus for several projects to return to active development in 2010. This trend continues in 2011. Some companies are actively developing oil sands project phases previously placed on hold and investor interest in new projects also continues to increase, CAPP says

Meanwhile, application of new technology has enabled resurgence in production of conventional oil from tight (low permeability) reservoirs.

CAPP’s forecast is based on its annual survey of producers to determine planned production of oil sands, conventional and offshore crude oil through 2025. CAPP used this data along with other inputs from producer companies to illustrate production trends.




The best news is that the majority of oil sands extractions will used in situ by 2016 and produce less pollution.

The second good news is that Canada will produce 200% of its requirements by 2016.

The third good news is the Canada will expand its oil and NG/SG export to Asia by 2016.

The fourth good news is that Old Henry, in the Gulf of St-Lawrence, will be in production by 2016. Eastern Canada will have another local source for oil.

The fifth good news is that USA will have an increased stable source of oil by 2016+.


correction 2016 such have been 2025 in all cases.


I would rather make fuels in the U.S. from coal, natural gas and biomass than import more oil. Leave it in the ground, we will all need it later.


USA can hardly produce 20+ million barrels/equivalent/day forever. Without imports, it would run out of crude oil, coal, NG/SG, biomass and other feed stocks 3 to 4 times faster.

To continue at the current increasing consumption rate, USA will have to import more oil and energy in the years and decades to come, unless the current economic crisis is extended by a few more years/decades, like the last big one. That may be a strong possibility, in that case, local reserves could last much longer.


I am surprised that they expect conventional oil sources from 'known' fields to exist in 2025.

I will be very surprised if conventional oil sources discovered in the Arctic within Canada's future agreed-upon economic zone in the coming decades will not cause the 'conventional' portion to grow way beyond the conventional sources now expected.

Here's to hoping that CCS technology and safe, efficient 'hyper' cold platform drilling technology will be up to the task on both sources, respectively - and Canadians will find something else to do for revenue and export past 2040s.


The U.S. produces over 6 million out of the 18 million barrels that is now consumes per day and should be able to do that for a while. We have 200 years of coal at present consumption, so even if we doubled that we would have 100 years. Biomass is sustainable at one billion tons each year as long as the sun shines. That is good for over 1/3 of our gasoline consumed, even without food crops.

The U.S. COULD do fine without any oil imports from anywhere for about 100 years. We also need to have more efficient transportation so that we use less over time. We have gone over all of this over and over many times before, but I guess some just want to keep talking about it.


Energy is abundant throughout the universe. At any moment complete and total access to that energy is possible. Only the portent of power sharing prevents this from happening immediately. Progress is being made. The old rulers understand it is time to share. The future is bright and there is plenty for all.


Well, this is not the universe it is planet Earth complete with greed mongers and war. There may be enough oil in the middle east, but they will not let you have it without paying them a ransom.


The solution and urgency is not the same for every country.

USA, China and India (almost 50% of the world population) do not have enough oil, NG/SG, coal and biomass to meet their increasing requirements for more than a few decades. Canada has enough for 1000+ years.

Gone are the days when large countries could grab those products for next to nothing. Oil at $1.50/barrel will never happen again. It will be 100 times that price very soon. The same will happen with the price of coal, NG/SG and biomass feed stocks. Be prepared to pay much more for those products.

That being said, more efficiency will have to be introduced in all transportation vehicles, airplanes, ships, machines, household and commercial HVAC, appliances, electronic gadgets etc to reduce energy and fuel consumption to a sustainable level.

It can and must be done. No need to deny it.


If the U.S. gets on fuel economy and fuel plants we could eliminate 4 million barrels per day of OPEC oil. If other countries like China and India want to buy that oil, then that is their business. I suspect they will adopt similar measures and take the pressure off the world oil market.


I hope that you are right SJC. Otherwise, can you imagine 1000+ million gas guzzlers in China and as many in India and another 300+ million in Brazil and as many in Russia? In other words, they should not do as we did but as we are planning to do by 2050+. It is a tall order?


There used to be 2 million cars in China, then 20 million and now heading to 200 million. Developing countries develop and they like cars, but there is no reason we have to remain dependent on oil to run them. Whether EV or an FFV plug hybrid running on M85 made from biomass, they are BOTH not using petroleum derived fuels.


They are frightening maths SJC and even more scary when you add in India. You and every other poster assume that the energy is available, in one form or another, for everyone in the world to live as westerners do now. This is clearly not the case.

The Pentagon has commissioned research that predicts resource wars as we reach peak oil in the near future. China, India and Brazil will not eaily give up the right to a western lifestyle just so we can live in the wasteful manner we are accustomed to.

The picture on coal is not nearly so rosy as some posters seem to think. Miners are laready digging up lower grade coal because the high grade stuff is gone. Just because a resource exists doesn't mean it is economical to produce.

Here in Australia a coal mine expansion is being challenged in the courts because it will compromise our greenhouse gas targets. Both here and in the US, new coal fired power plants are unable to find finance because banks see them as too risky.


Good points critta. Wind and Solar energies are cleaner, much more sustainable (no real negative effects on food production and price) and almost unlimited as long as the sun/wind is there and that may be for another 5+ billion years.

Germany has decided to do away with nuclear and fossil fuel power plants and rely on clean power sources in the near future. The first 25% step is already done. Italy and many other countries may follow their example by the end of this decade. Japan is serious looking at the German experience. They (Japan firms) will produce 50+% efficient solar panels by 2016.

USA, with all powerful coal, oil, corn lobbies, will not follow and will keep using low cost dirty energy sources regardless of the negative effects on the people health and well being. China and India have difficult decisions to make. They may not follow Germany's example either.

Eventually, much higher import duties may have to be applied on products made with dirty energy.


Here's a better idea: instead of trying to get oil from stone (no pun intended), do this instead:


It's a no-brainer.

The average fuel efficiency of the North American fleet is 15 mpg. Doubling that to 30mpg by driving smaller vehicles will reduce the requirement for 20 million barrels per day significantly.

HarveyD are correct but about 70% of Americans/Canadian are still convinced that their personal safety is in jeopardy unless they drive a 3+ tonne gas guzzler vehicle. The brain wash implantation was done over 50+ years and is very deep. De-programming may take one or two generations. We still strongly believe that bigger is better.


Coal and natural gas can be a bridge to where we want to go, nothing this big changes quickly. The Horizon well blow out that destroyed the Gulf was 1/1000 of what the U.S. uses, that is the size of the situation.

Stan Peterson

SJC noted that US Oil consumption is now 18 million barrels per day. I didn't think it had shrunk that much yet, but it had peaked at near 21 million barrels per day early in the decade, according to the International Energy Association. Ironically the non-signer of Kyoto has near met the terms of the Kyoto Protocal while all the signees merely talked a good show, despite the pre-rigged benefit of counting the East Bloc collapse, as help.

The IEA has reported that US Oil demand has peaked, and has been shrinking at an increasing rate every since the early years of the new century. Further the rest of the developed world is now similarly experiencing declining demand, from mid-decade, making room for the developing world to access Oil.

Our efforts at efficiency and substitution have worked; and all other Oil markets but transportation were long in unequivical, outright, decline as substitutes were much easier to develop. We no longer generate electricity with Oil, but we used to do so extensively. Increasingly, we neither heat nor cool our homes with Oil; we do it with other energy sources. Increasingly, we make our polymers and pharmaceuticals from other than Oil. Increasing percentages of our lubricants are created synthetically from silicon compounds.

But even seemingly intransigent Transport demand has now turned negative, as the increased fuel economy of our transport fleets are indeed biting. After 40 years of searching for better technologies and substitutes, we are succeeding and seeing them come to market.

We can expect Transport fuel economy to climb, and Oil demand to continue to decline, rapidly for a while, with the spread of hybridization, electrical substitution, and increased production of bio-fuel substitutes. We are also benefitting, as well, from pure efficiency increases, as our engineers and scientists address issues of combustion efficiency, having previously succeeded in cleansing the combustion process. The American auto fleet has shrunk to common sizes with those available through all the rest of the World. Furthermore our easy licensing of American developed, cleansing technology like catalytic converters, EGR, and sensor development; and the open market access lure of the American Transport market, have allowed and seduced World makers of cars, trucks, locomotives, planes and cargo vessels to incorporate similar improvements for their home markets, despite the recognized lag.

World sized cars from A, B, C, D, and E-segment cars available in America, are now the same as those sold every where else, and are differing only in our insistence on cleaner, less polluting, vehicles that we have mandated.

OTOH, we are nearing Clean Air and Clean Waters that a rich society like ours can demand and secure. Yet another example of American Exceptionalism that lights and inspires the World. I look forward to the national celebration for "Victory for the Envionment", a VE Day indicating our total success in combatting pollution and restoring a pristine environment.

Conservation at its best, despite a still rising population. Soon will come increased supply from the new sources and technologies driving a collapse of Oil prices down to the marginal cost of production, about $60 dollars per barrel. That alone will create the basis for an economic boom for a generation or so.

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