U.S. natural gas production reached a record high level of 79 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) in 2015, an increase of 5 percent from the previous year, even as natural gas prices remained relatively low, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said.
It said in a not on its website that production from five states—Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, Oklahoma, and North Dakota—was responsible for most of this growth, offsetting declines in much of the rest of the United States.
Total natural gas production in the federal Gulf of Mexico grew slightly (6 percent), reaching 3.6 Bcf/d in 2015, after declining for five consecutive years. The long-term decline in natural gas production from the Gulf of Mexico is likely the result of the higher cost of offshore production compared with onshore production. Historically, most Gulf of Mexico natural gas production has come from shallow water fields.
EIA’s Short-Term Energy Outlook projects natural gas production growth will slow to 0.9 percent in 2016, as low natural gas prices and declining rig activity temporarily reduce production. In 2017, however, forecast production growth increases to 2.2 percent, as projected natural gas prices rise, industrial demand grows, and liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports increase.