U.S. petroleum and natural gas production rose 16% and 12%, respectively, in 2018. Combined, they set a new production record, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). The rise in 2018 was one of the largest increases in production from a single country.
The United States became the largest producer of natural gas after surpassing Russia in 2011. In 2018, the United States became the largest producer of petroleum after surpassing Saudi Arabia. When comparing the United States and Russia, the production levels of natural gas and petroleum are almost split. With regard to Saudi Arabia, the country mostly produces petroleum.
The United States produced 28.7 quadrillion British thermal units of petroleum in 2018, and this comprised 80% crude oil and condensate and 20% natural gas plant liquids. U.S. crude oil production rose 17% to a record of almost 11 million barrels per day in 2018 and was equal to 22.8 quadrillion British thermal units in terms of energy. Production in the Permian region of western Texas and eastern New Mexico accounted for the majority of the increase. Since 2008, the production of natural gas plant liquids has more than doubled to 4.3 million barrels per day in 2018 and was equal to 5.8 quadrillion British thermal units.
U.S. dry natural gas production rose 12% to 28.5 billion cubic feet per day in 2018 and was equal to a record level of 31.5 quadrillion British thermal units. An increase in liquefied natural gas export capacity and the ability to reach new markets have contributed to the production growth.
In Russia, crude oil and natural gas production also rose to record levels in 2018 as a result of increased global demand. Russia exports most of the crude oil it produces to countries in Europe and China. Since 2016, nearly 60% of Russia’s crude oil exports have gone to European countries in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.
Natural gas production in Russia rose 7% in 2018 and exceeded the rise in exports. Since 2000, more than 80% of Russia’s natural gas exports have gone to Europe.
Crude oil production in Saudi Arabia rose slightly in 2018 but was lower than it was in 2016, when the country’s crude oil output hit a record high. Saudi Arabia’s crude oil production hit a record high in November 2018 before the December 2018 agreement by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Counties to extend production cuts. Crude oil exports account for about 60% of Saudi Arabia’s total economic output.