Provincial oil production forecast jumps almost 19M barrels

Daniel MacEachern
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Finance Minister Tom Marshall spoke today to the Atlantic Provinces Ideas Exchange of the International Council of Shopping Centres at the Delta Hotel in St. John's. — Photo by Gary Hebbard/The Telegram

Finance Minister Tom Marshall announced this afternoon that the province’s predicted oil production for 2011 has jumped almost 19 million barrels.

It’s the latest revision this year to production numbers, from this year’s budget — which forecast declines at the three oilfields off Newfoundland, based on estimates from the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board — to an announcement in May that boosted production estimates due to deferred repairs at the Terra Nova production ship, to today’s announcement of the 18.8 million barrels.

“We now believe, based on what they’re telling us, that production’s going to be up about 18, 19 million barrels. So at $108 a barrel US, do the math,” he told the audience at a conference for the International Council of Shopping Centers, at the Delta Hotel in St. John’s. “So our surplus that we projected — other things being equal, of course — will be much higher than we had forecast.”

After the luncheon address, Marshall noted that first-quarter oil prices averaged well above the US$108 estimate used by the provincial government in this year’s budget, meaning more money for provincial coffers — but he said things could turn around, and noted that increased production this year means less production in the future.

“It’s only the first quarter. We still have the rest of the year to go, but it’s looking really good,” he said, adding that surplus revenue would go towards the province’s debt.

Twitter: TelegramDaniel

Organizations: Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Oil Petroleum Board, International Council of Shopping Centers, Delta Hotel

Geographic location: Newfoundland, Terra Nova, US

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Recent comments

  • Bill
    August 17, 2011 - 06:06

    Wow! Another boatload of money to use to buy votes or funnel into Nalcor for so-called investment purposes. I agree with Jack, we might not be around long enough to benefit from these windfalls, and so we continue to shuffle along trying to make ends meet on provincial pensions locked in place for the past 20 years.

  • Joe
    August 17, 2011 - 03:44

    Hey Tom, How about cutting taxes on gas; decrease the price of electricity for home owners; not industry as they make money from their consumption of electricity; if they don't already get electricity for free from our government. You stand up before the microphones and go on and on about do the math on how much money we are getting from our oil resources..... Well how about fixes all the roads in and around St.John's and the Outer Ring Death Trap....the roads in this province are like wars zones. What does this statement mean "noted that increased production this year means less production in the future" ....are we saving all our money for a rainy day. The longer we wait to fix/repair and keep up maintenance on our services the more we the math Tom!! WHO ARE WE SAVING THE MONEY FOR?????

  • baie boy
    August 16, 2011 - 21:19

    Jack. This is what I will get along with everyone else. The fact is a senior Canadian couple who have never worked a day in their lives or saved a penny would qualify for more than $24,000 a year, much of it tax-free and indexed to the cost of living. You get this & more & still complain. You get what "YOU" & your union agreed to & have pretty much bankrupt the province with your over generous early pension plan. You pay in little & collect hundreds thousands before you reach 65. Make due with what you are getting.

  • Mark
    August 16, 2011 - 20:56

    Glad to hear Minister Marshall say the surplus will go toward the provincial debt. Paying down the debt needs to be the focus during these oil boom years, so that my generation (of which there are far fewer people compared to the pensioning boomers) won't be stuck with it.

  • Mark
    August 16, 2011 - 20:55

    Glad to hear Minister Marshall say the surplus will go toward the provincial debt. Paying down the debt needs to be the focus during these oil boom years, so that my generation (of which there are far fewer people compared to the pensioning boomers) won't be stuck with it.

  • George Murphy
    August 16, 2011 - 16:54

    Extra production now means less coming out of the ground for future generations. This is akin to mortgaging their future. What's the rush to pick up on production if, from what we keep hearing from Nalcor, prices are going nowhere but up?

  • Max
    August 16, 2011 - 15:59

    I would have to agree Jack, the Provincial claw back on Pensions is unconscionable. Seniors have seen nothing but the negatives of this Oil prosperity, higher prices for fuel of all kinds just a higher cost of living in general, while being obliged to live on a fixed Pension. The Conservatives have no compassion, but then what would you expect of a party of (Big Business). The people of this Province rejected the Conservative way back in May on the Federal scene, and I believe will do the same Provincially in October. Certainly any Senior who would vote for this Provincial government is betraying their own, and while it may be difficult to bring them down in this Provincial Election, we must keep fighting this GROSS inequity. It's just a matter of time, the writing is on the wall, and Grey Power will prevail.

  • John Smith
    August 16, 2011 - 14:49

    Hey Jack...don't let the door hit your arse on the way out LOL

  • Scott Free
    August 16, 2011 - 14:42

    Sounds like mis-management and bad guessing by both Tory gov't & CNLOPB. Are you guys throwing darts at the wall? or, spinning a raffle wheel to determine production and revenue? Is this the way other governments roll the dice on its natural resources? as a crap shoot for either deficit or surplus??

  • Jack
    August 16, 2011 - 13:51

    How about giving some back to the Provincial Pensioners whom you took from over the years. I am living pay to pay day cause of the reduction in my pension at 65.....Might just sell off and move away, seems that is what you would like.

    • Brian
      August 16, 2011 - 14:58

      Jack, You have received money....lower income taxes...increased benefits for low income individuals.....increased health care and other services (including doctors).....better roads......HST rebate on home heating will shortly come into effect.....what else could you want.....this government needs to pay down it's debt. Secondly, do you also realize that the public service pension liability is about the size of NL's actual debt?........meaning the public service in this province gets more than their fare share of the provinces funds. Sorry sir but you are barking up the wrong tree.