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Total Canadian oil production up 8 percent

Production for final six months of the year slower than 2013.

By Daniel J. Graeber

CALGARY, Alberta, Feb. 10 (UPI) -- The full-year 2014 crude oil production average for Canadian basins increased year-on-year, but there may be strains from low oil prices, federal data show.

The National Energy Board released full-year production figures for 2014, showing a cumulative average of 3.8 million barrels per day, an 8 percent increase from full-year 2013. Total crude oil production since June, when oil prices reached their recent peak, increased by about 1 percent.

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In a late January report, NEB noted the decline in global crude oil prices was in part a reflection of the increase in U.S. oil production. That lead to strains on Canadian oil output, which is expensive to produce. While total Canadian crude oil production increased for the year, the heavier grade of crude oil sometimes dubbed tar sands held more or less steady at 1.7 million bpd on average during the last six months of 2014. Production of heavy Canadian crude oil increased 1 percent from June to December

During the same period in 2013, production of heavy Canadian crude oil increased 10 percent.

Canada sends more than 95 percent of its exported crude oil to the U.S. market. Before the shale era began in the last decade, the NEB said in its January report the United States was expected to need more foreign-sourced crude oil.

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During the last five years, the NEB said, growth in U.S. oil production is equal to the entire output from Canada.

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