Ethane Methodology


Updated March 2017

2016 Estimates

All values for 2016 have been estimated using data up until the end of August 2016. Full-year estimates for 2016 were derived using these data.

Forecasting Methodology

Natural gas liquids (NGLs) are a by-product of associated gas from oil well production, shale production, and raw conventional natural gas production in Alberta. The NGL production forecast model considers all types of gas production and all seven Petroleum Services Association of Canada (PSAC) areas. The model then accounts for the liquids content traced back to the reservoir pools and the liquids recovery factor from a representative field and from fractionation plants and straddle plants. The production forecast also includes ethane from bitumen off-gas produced from upgraders.

The ethane demand forecast accounts for the ethylene production capacities in the petrochemical sector.

When production is less than consumption, the difference is assumed to be met by imports. However, the AER checks import capacity and availability to ensure that the demand forecast is realistic. When Alberta’s production exceeds demand, the surplus is assumed to be stored or removed from the province.