The EIA reports that imports of light-sweet and light-sour grade crude to the Gulf Coast is now almost nonexistent
The Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported today that imports of light-sweet and light-sour crude to the United States Gulf of Mexico have declined to the point of being nearly nonexistent. The administration’s note says the increase in U.S. shale and tight crude oil production has resulted in a drastic decrease in crude oil imports to the Gulf Coast area.
Beginning in 2010, improvements to the crude distribution system and sustained increases in production in the Permian and Eagle Ford basins significantly reduced light crude imports. The Gulf historically imported as much as 1,300 MBOPD of light-sweet crude, more than any other region in the country.
Since September 2012, imports of light-sweet crude oil to the Gulf have regularly been less than 200 MBOPD. Similarly, Gulf imports of light-sour crude have declined and have been less than 200 MBOPD since July 2013. The EIA reports that in November 2014, light-sweet imports to the Gulf were 552 MBOPD and light-sour imports were 125 MBOPD. In September 2014, light-sweet imports to the Gulf were just 7 MBOPD.
Crude oil has previously been imported to the Gulf Coast from several countries, mainly the Americas (Mexico, Venezuela, Colombia and Canada) and the Middle East (Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Iraq). Imports from other countries to the Gulf have declined significantly in recent years, from an average of 1,700 MBOPD in 2009 to 260 MBOPD in 2014, through October.
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