US gas output hits new record high

03 February 2013, News wire – Gross natural gas production in the lower 48 US states in November climbed to a record high for a third month, gaining 0.6% from downwardly revised October output, data from the US Energy Information Administration.

Lower 48 “wet” gas output in November totalled 73.88 billion cubic feet per day, up from the revised October output of 73.47 Bcfd, the EIA said in its Monthly Natural Gas Gross Production Report, Reuters reported.

Lower 48 refers to gas production in the US, excluding Alaska and Hawaii.

The EIA’s previous estimate for October was 73.54 Bcfd, the news wire said.

Monthly output in November was about 1.42 Bcfd, or 2%, above the same year-ago month.

“Other States,” such as Pennsylvania and Colorado, again contributed the largest month-on-month volume increase, rising 1.4%, or 0.33 Bcfd, as operators reported new wells coming on line in the Marcellus shale play in Appalachia.

Wyoming production grew by 3.1%, or 0.18 Bcfd, as two gas plants returned to full production, while Gulf of Mexico output rose by 3.5%, or 0.14 Bcfd, as some shut in wells came back on line, EIA said.

Louisiana production fell 2.6%, or 0.21 Bcfd, as some operators reported shut ins.

Gas futures on the New York Mercantile Exchange, which were up about 2 cents at $3.358 per MMBtu just before the EIA data was released at about 12:00 EST (1700 GMT), slipped a little more than a penny immediately after the report.

Gross gas output has increased in seven of 11 monthly reports in 2012, notching new record highs in the last three reports.

The associated gas produced from more-profitable shale oil and shale gas liquids wells has kept dry gas flowing at or near a record pace.

The EIA estimates that marketed gas output in 2013 will hit a record high for the third straight year.

Gross withdrawals, according to EIA, are converted to marketed natural gas production by subtracting gas used for repressuring, quantities vented and flared, and non-hydrocarbon gases removed in treating or processing operations.

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