Oil production has exceeded pre-pandemic levels

The oil production has exceeded pre-pandemic levels

Oil wells in Alberta.

Oil production in Canada exceeds pre-pandemic volumes for the month of November 2021, finds the latest energy report from Statistics Canada. Since December 2019, this production of crude oil and equivalent products has fallen, then fluctuated and could not be exceeded until October 2021, almost two years later.

“Production of crude oil and equivalent products amounted to 23.7 million cubic meters in November. Although it is down from the previous month, when it reached its highest level since December 2019”, indicates Statistics Canada in its most recent energy report for November. Last month, October 2021, crude oil production stood at 24.4 million cubic meters.

Even though November 2021 is overall below November 2021. October 2021, which marks the highest level of production since December 2019, production remained strong compared to November 2020 (+3.8%).

These various increasing figures are mainly due to oil sands extraction, which increased by 4.9% to 15.8 million cubic meters last November. “This is the ninth consecutive monthly increase year over year, as demand for energy products has remained strong,” said Statistics Canada.

In terms of gas production, Canada recorded a fifth consecutive monthly increase from one year to the next. It stood at 613.1 million gigajoules in November, up by 8.0% compared to last year.

Reduction needed, says Équiterre

The environmental organization Équiterre considers that reducing GHGs goes hand in hand with reducing oil production. “Such levels of oil production speak to the magnitude of the challenge that collectively awaits us. One day, we will have to understand that it is completely illogical to produce more hydrocarbons and reduce our GHGs. Contrary to what the fossil fuel industry tries to make us believe. One plus one equals 2, it does not equal minus one!” reacted Émile Boisseau-Bouvier, climate policy analyst at Équiterre.

Canada should, by the end of March 2022, present a plan to reduce GHG emissions for 2030.

“The economy is back on old foundations which are problematic. Despite some efforts, governments have not been able to inject an electric shock into their stimulus investments in order to be able to restructure the economy, and ensure that we make a just and green transition. […] The time is no longer for fine speeches but for concrete and convincing action,” commented the head of the Climate-Energy campaign at Greenpeace Canada, Patrick Bonin.

To electric?

Statistics Canada notes that electricity generation continued to decline in November to 51.7 million megawatt hours (MWh), down 3.0% from a year earlier. It’s the production of hydroelectricity (-3.9%) and the production of electricity from nuclear energy (10.2%) which contributed to this drop, while the production of electricity from fuels, including biomass, increased by 4.8%.

Quebec, for its part, wants to tighten the rules surrounding the sale of gasoline vehicles in order to get closer to its target of 100% electric car sales by 2035. On the Quebec government's roadmap, the number of new electric vehicles sold must meet a minimum quota. By 2025, 17.5% of new cars sold will have to be electric. This proportion will be multiplied by four to reach 77.5% in 2030. The target of 100% must be reached in 2035.

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