Propane Methodology


Updated March 2018

2017 Estimates

All values for 2017 have been estimated using data reported by industry up until the end of August 2017. Full-year estimates for 2017 were derived using these data, adjusting for seasonality.

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 propane from bitumen off-gas produced from upgraders.

The propane demand forecast factors in demand from the residential, commercial, industrial, agricultural, and transportation sectors.

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.

The AER uses propane production volumes submitted to Petrinex by field plant, fractionation plant, and straddle plant operators. Petrinex is a secure, centralized information network used to exchange petroleum-related information.