July 12th, 2024

Alberta regulator projects 17 per cent growth in oilsands production by 2033

By The Canadian Press on June 24, 2024.

The Alberta Energy Regulator says it expects the province's oilsands production to grow by more than 17 per cent by 2033. Boilers—where steam is created—at the Cenovus Christina Lake oilsands facility southeast of Fort McMurray, Alta., on Wednesday April 24, 2024. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Amber Bracken

CALGARY – The Alberta Energy Regulator says it expects the province’s oilsands production to grow by more than 17 per cent by 2033.

The regulator released its annual forecast Monday.

It predicts production of raw bitumen – the thick, sticky oil found in Alberta’s oilsands region – will grow to four million barrels per day in 2033, up from the 3.4 million barrels per day that was produced last year.

Most of the growth is expected to come not from oilsands mines, but from in situ operations, which use steam to loosen up the oil deep below the surface of the earth.

The AER also predicts global oil prices will continue to rise, from a projected average of US$76 per barrel for U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate for the current year to US$83.63 by 2033.

The regulator says it believes fossil fuels will still be an important part of the global energy mix a decade from now as society seeks to balance the energy transition with affordability and reliability concerns.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 24, 2024.

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