More than 2,300 producing oil wells were drilled in Alberta last year — double the previous year’s tally.
This is among the statistics contained in the Energy Resources Conservation Board’s annual report, entitled Alberta’s Reserves 2010 and Supply/Demand Outlook 2011-2020.
Released on Wednesday, the report also indicates that crude oil production in the province last year was 459,000 barrels per day, for a total of 168 million barrels. This was down 0.4 per cent from 2009.
Production of raw crude bitumen from the oilsands averaged 1.6 million barrels per day, for a yearly total of 589 million barrels. This figure was up eight per cent from 2009.
The ERCB now forecasts that Alberta’s annual raw crude bitumen production will total 3.5 million barrels per day, or 1.3 billion barrels per year, by 2020. It also noted in its report that Alberta has accounted for 7.5 billion barrels of raw crude bitumen from the oil sands since 1967, and that crude oil production in the province has reached 16 billion barrels since the industry began.
The ERCB’s estimate of remaining established crude oil reserves in Alberta has increased by 3.7 per cent, the first upward adjustment since 2005.
Remaining established crude bitumen and crude oil reserves are now calculated at 170.8 billion barrels, with 169.3 billion barrels of this crude bitumen and 1.5 billion barrels crude oil.
In the case of natural gas, remaining established marketable conventional reserves are estimated at 36.4 trillion cubic feet, with coalbed methane gas at 2.4 trillion cubic feet.
The province’s remaining established coal reserves are at 33 billion tonnes.