U.S. natgas output to rise, demand to ease in 2022 -EIA

A pump jack operates in the Permian Basin oil and natural gas production area near Odessa
A pump jack operates in the Permian Basin oil and natural gas production area near Odessa, Texas, U.S., February 10, 2019. REUTERS/Nick Oxford//File Photo

Jan 11 (Reuters) - U.S. natural gas production will rise to an all-time high in 2022, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said in its Short Term Energy Outlook (STEO) on Tuesday.

EIA projected dry gas production will rise to 96.04 billion cubic feet per day (bcfd) in 2022 and 97.55 bcfd in 2023 from the current record of 93.51 bcfd in 2021.

The agency also projected gas consumption would slide from 82.96 bcfd in 2021 to 82.77 bcfd in 2022 before rising to 82.84 bcfd in 2023. That compares with a record 85.29 bcfd in 2019.

If gas consumption slides in 2022 as expected, it would be the first time demand fell for three years in a row since 1983 when it fell for four consecutive years, according to EIA data.

EIA's January supply projection for 2022 was bigger than its December forecast of 95.97 bcfd, but its January demand projection fell short of its December forecast of 83.10 bcfd.

The agency's forecast U.S. liquefied natural gas exports would reach 11.54 bcfd in 2022 and 12.13 bcfd in 2023, up from a record 9.78 bcfd in 2021. That is similar to its December forecast of 11.49 bcfd in 2022.

EIA projected U.S. coal production would rise to 612 million short tons in 2022 and 619 million short tons in 2023 from 579 million short tons in 2021 as power plants burn more coal due to a forecast increase in gas prices.

In 2020, coal output fell to 535 million short tons, its lowest since 1965.

EIA projected carbon emissions from burning fossil fuels would rise from 4.859 billion tonnes in 2021 to 4.946 billion tonnes in 2022 and 4.971 billion in 2023 as power generators burn more coal.

That is up from 4.576 billion tonnes in 2020, which was the lowest since 1983.

Reporting by Scott DiSavino; Editing by Chris Reese and Andrea Ricci

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