canada africa partner reservation The energy industry is growing as demand increases

The energy industry is growing as demand increases

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Demand for energy continues to increase from coast to coast, and record production from various sources continues to grow.

Crude oil and natural gas, which account for 80% of the nation’s energy, nearly set a new record for monthly production in February, according to data released this week by the Energy Information Administration.

U.S. oil production totaled 13.2 million b/d in February, just below the record 13.3 million b/d set in December 2023. Natural gas production totaled 128,058 million cubic feet per day in February – also just below the record set in December 2023 of 128,883 million barrels per day. /D.

The increase in production has also benefited the results of many companies. The two largest integrated oil companies in the US, ExxonMobil and Chevron, reported healthy financials this week.

ExxonMobil reported net income of $8.2 billion, and Chevron said it had net income of $5.5 billion in the first quarter, January-March.

Oil prices averaged $80 per barrel, but natural gas is experiencing severe oversupply and unusually low prices of just under $2 million. The EIA estimated natural gas consumption in February 2024 at 102.4 Bcf/d – a decrease of 2.8% compared to February 2023, 105.3 Bcf/d.

This was the lowest daily natural gas consumption for the month since 2018, according to EIA.

According to EIA, U.S. electricity generation from wind turbines declined in 2023 for the first time since the mid-1990s, despite the addition of 6.2 gigawatts of new wind capacity last year. U.S. wind energy production totaled 425,235 gigawatt hours in 2023, down 2.1% from the 434,297 GWh generated in 2022.

U.S. wind capacity has increased steadily in recent years, more than tripling from 47.0 GW in 2010 to 147.5 GW by the end of 2023, the EIA said.

“The decline in wind generation in 2023 indicates that wind is maturing as a generation source after decades of rapid growth,” the EIA said.

Nuclear energy got a boost this week with the announced completion of a nuclear reactor in Georgia.

Georgia Power said Unit 4 of the reactor at Plant Vogtle has entered commercial operation, completing its 11-year expansion project.

Vogtle Unit 3 became commercially operational in July 2023. The plant’s first two reactors, with a combined nominal capacity of 2,430 megawatts, were commissioned in 1987 and 1989.

The two new reactors bring Plant Vogtle’s total generating capacity to nearly 5 gigawatts, surpassing the 4,210 MW Palo Verde plant in Arizona and making Vogtle’s four units the largest nuclear power plant in the United States.

Construction of the two new reactor sites began in 2009. Originally expected to cost $14 billion and to begin commercial operation in 2016, Vogtle 3, and in 2017, Vogtle 4, the project suffered significant construction delays and cost overruns.

Georgia Power now estimates the total cost of the project at more than $30 billion, the EIA said.

There are no nuclear reactors currently under construction in the United States, the EIA said.

Alex Mills is the former president of the Texas Alliance of Energy Producers.