World oil demand in 2018 is set to grow by an additional 100,000 barrels per day, according to the latest revision to the figure by the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
The forecast, which was part of the agency's Short-Term Energy Outlook for January, also said that the 2019 demand figure would stand at 101.76 million bpd—an increase of 1.65 million bpd from the current year.
The report also noted that the North Sea Brent barrel stands at $64 per barrel, which is the highest it has been since November 2014, the start of the oil price crisis.
U.S. oil and gas production will continue to increase in 2019 as well, to the chagrin of OPEC and Russia—major exporters looking to curb production and reduce competition from American shippers.
"U.S. crude oil production is forecast to average 10.3 million b/d in 2018, which would mark the highest annual average production in U.S. history, surpassing the previous record of 9.6 million b/d set in 1970," the report said. "EIA forecasts production to increase to an average of 10.8 million b/d in 2019 and to surpass 11 million b/d in November 2019.
The EIA also released a report today on the history of power plant retirements over the past decade.
"Nearly all of the utility-scale power plants in the United States that were retired from 2008 through 2017 were fueled by fossil fuels," the document said. "Of the total retired capacity, coal power plants and natural gas steam turbines accounted for the highest percentages, 47 percent and 26 percent, respectively. Most of the planned retirements through 2020 will also be coal plants and natural gas steam turbines, based on information reported to EIA."
Still, most coal plant retirements were for small and old facilities that had run their course, rather than an environmentally minded initiative against greenhouse gas emissions.
By Zainab Calcuttawala for Oilprice.com