Canadian oil and gas producer Husky Energy Inc. said Feb. 26 it expects 2019 production could be lower than it had previously expected because of mandatory output cuts imposed by the government of Alberta.
Husky now expects output to be in the range of 290,000-305,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day (boe/d). In December, the company had said it expects to produce 300,000 boe/d.
The Canadian province of Alberta mandated temporary oil production cuts effective Jan. 1 to deal with pipeline bottlenecks that led to a crude glut and deep price discounts on Canadian crude.
On Feb. 26, Husky said quarterly production was hit by a shutdown in its White Rose Field off the Atlantic coast during the quarter ended Dec. 31. Average realized prices were down C$25.47 per barrel of oil equivalent (boe) in the fourth quarter, from C$46.69 per boe a year earlier.
"It was a challenging quarter," said CEO Rob Peabody. "The oil spill on the East Coast was particularly disappointing, and we are continuing to work closely with the regulator to determine the root cause and apply learnings.
For the quarter, average quarterly production fell to 304,300 boe/d from 320,400 boe/d. Analysts, on average, had expected the company to report 304,365 boe/d. (US$1 = C$1.3217)
Natural gas prices are up sharply this year, the result of supply shortages and stronger-than-expected demand in Europe and Asia.
About 720,000 bbl/d of crude oil production and 1.075 Bcf/d of gas were offline, while 39 production platforms continued to be evacuated after Tropical Storm Nicholas passed through.
Nicholas made landfall as Category 1 hurricane on Sept. 13, the second storm in two weeks to hit major oil and refining hubs at the U.S. Gulf Coast which were just starting to recover.