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US natural gas production tumbles, oil output rises in March


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US natural gas production tumbles, oil output rises in March

Total U.S. natural gas production slipped 0.2%, or about 0.2 Bcf/d, to a total of 108.50 Bcf/d in March from 108.7 Bcf/d in February, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration's latest "Monthly Crude Oil and Natural Gas Production" report released May 31.

March's figures were up 10.4%, or 10.2 Bcf/d, from March 2018.

Total U.S. natural gas production, as measured by the EIA as "gross withdrawals," includes the natural gas liquids present in "wet" gas as well as nonhydrocarbon gases and any gas delivered as royalty payments or consumed in field operations.

Leading the charge lower was Alaska, which reported a decline of 3.6%, or 347 MMcf/d, in March. Gas output in Texas also dropped, with the state reporting a 0.9%, or 247 MMcf/d, slip for the month. Output in Ohio and Oklahoma eased, with both posting monthly decreases of 0.8%, or 56 MMcf/d and 72 MMcf/d, respectively.

Working to offset the general decline was the Gulf of Mexico, which reported an 8.7%, or 235 MMcf/d, increase in output in March. North Dakota's gas output also ticked higher with a 7.2%, or 186 MMcf/d, monthly increase. Output in New Mexico and Pennsylvania also rose with a 1.9%, or 92 MMcf/d, monthly increase posted for the former and a 0.7%, or 129 MMcf/d, uptick noted in the latter.

Total crude oil output in the U.S. for March rose 2.1%, or 241,000 barrels per day, to a total of 11.91 million bbl/d, increasing from the 11.66 million bbl/d total seen in February.

March's values were 13.8%, or 1.44 million bbl/d, higher than those posted in March 2018.

Providing a boost to U.S. oil output was an 11.1%, or 191,000 bbl/d, increase in production from the Gulf of Mexico. Output in North Dakota added 3.2%, or 42,000 bbl/d, from February, while production in New Mexico rose 2.7%, or 23,000 bbl/d, in March. Oklahoma's crude oil output nudged higher by 2.7%, or 16,000 bbl/d, in March.