Canada produced 20.3 million cubic metres (127.5 million barrels) of crude oil and equivalent products in April, up 12.5 per cent from the same month a year ago, says Statistics Canada.
“With the exception of heavy crude oil (-4.9 per cent), production of all types of crude oil was up compared with April 2017,” said the federal agency in a report released on Tuesday. “Non-upgraded crude bitumen production increased 13.7 per cent to 8.4 million cubic metres in April. Non-upgraded crude bitumen production consisted of mined crude bitumen (+17.0 per cent), plus in-situ crude bitumen (+10.1 per cent ), minus crude bitumen sent for further processing (+11.5 per cent).
“Production of synthetic crude oil was 13.6 per cent higher compared with April 2017, when output was affected by an explosion at an upgrader facility in Alberta. Over the same period, production of light and medium crude oil was up 15.5 per cent, while the production of equivalent products (+18.9 per cent) continued on an upward trend.”
StatsCan said crude oil production (excluding equivalent products) totalled 18.6 million cubic metres in April, up 11.9 per cent from the same month a year earlier.
“Despite the increase, crude oil production in April was at its lowest level since September 2017. Historically, spring is an intensive maintenance period for oil production and processing facilities,” it said.
“Oil sands extraction, which consists of non-upgraded crude bitumen and synthetic crude oil, increased 13.7% per cent year over year to 12.4 million cubic metres. Extraction of light, medium and heavy crude oils rose 8.6 per cent to 6.2 million cubic metres.”
Statistics Canada said Alberta produced 16.1 million cubic metres of crude oil and equivalent products in April, up 13.9 per cent from the same month a year earlier. Alberta (79.6 per cent), Saskatchewan (11.7 per cent) and Newfoundland and Labrador (6.0 per cent) accounted for the vast majority of Canadian production of crude oil and equivalent products.
Respected business writer Mario Toneguzzi is a veteran Calgary-based journalist who worked for 35 years for the Calgary Herald in various capacities, including 12 years as a senior business writer.