The maintenance of the mines with oil sands can achieve what until now they have not been able to obtain the obligatory cuts of the production of Alberta: they exhaust the storage tanks of the West.
Stocks in the region were 34 million barrels the week before, said Richard Kruger, chief executive officer of Imperial Oil Ltd., in a payphone call that quoted Genscape data. This figure has not changed much since when the government leaving Alberta announced compulsory production cuts in early December to alleviate abuse.
While the inventories fell initially around 28 million barrels in February, they began to rise again after the British crude oil price was strengthened to $ 10 for West Texas Intermediate futures, which made it not It was economic to transport by rail, the alternative to obstructed pipes. .
"This could be a time when production declines and inventories are reduced," said Kevin Birn, director of American crude oil markets at IHS Markit.
The strong Canadian oil prices have weakened somewhat this month, with the Western Canadian Select discount in future extensions up to $ 13 a barrel on Tuesday. The widest vacuum has facilitated more rail freight, which will go from 165,000 barrels to 175,000 barrels in April from 150,000 in March, said Imperial Kruger.
"We think that some of the main spring maintenance activities, especially in the mines, can help alleviate some of the pressure in the coming months," Kruger said on Friday.
Below is a list of some of the maintenance plans for oil sands this spring and summer:
- Imperial plans approximately 32 days of work at the installation of K2 in its Kearl mine of 220,000 barrels / day from mid-May, which will affect about 50,000 barrels a day of production
- Imperial started 36 days of maintenance at its headquarters in Lake Cold Lake, $ 160,000 a barrel last week, with a job that affected 13,000 barrels a day during the second quarter
- Devon Energy Corp. He will begin several weeks to work on his Jackfish site at $ 120,000 barrel in mid-May, affecting the production of the second quarter around 15,000 barrels a day
- Cenovus Energy Inc. It started 23 days of maintenance on its 210,000 barrels a day website at Christina Lake last week, and the installation returned to normal in mid-May.
- During the third quarter, Syncrude Canada Ltd. It will close the 8-1 coker, one of the three producers of oil sands, according to Imperial, a shareholder of Syncrude.
- Suncor Energy Inc. Plan maintenance for the second quarter: the work of the site in Firebag oil sands will affect about 30,000 barrels per day.