U.S. natural gas supply and demand grew significantly in the first half of 2018 compared to the first half of 2017, according to the U.S. Energy Information Agency’s (EIA) Natural Gas Monthly.
Natural gas consumption and exports averaged 93.4 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) during the first half of 2018, or 12% greater than during the first half of 2017. Total supply of U.S. natural gas, including domestic production, imports, and storage withdrawals, averaged 93.3 Bcf/d during the first half of 2018, a 12% increase from the first half of 2017.
The increase in U.S. natural gas supply was driven by production, especially from the Appalachian region. Total U.S. dry natural gas production rose 7.4 Bcf/d (10%) compared to the same period last year. The additional pipeline capacity brought into service since June 2017 has enabled production increases, according to the report
Domestic natural gas consumption in the first half of 2018 increased in all sectors compared with year-ago levels. The largest growth occurred in the residential and commercial sectors, which increased by 3.8 Bcf/d (16%) combined, compared to the first half of 2017. Residential and commercial consumption is primarily related to heating needs, and the beginning of 2018 experienced record, prolonged cold temperatures across many of the Lower 48 states. Population-weighted heating degree days, a temperature-based proxy for heating demand, were 17% higher in the United States during the first half of 2018 than in the first half of 2017.