Kuwait continued its run of burning significant volumes of crude oil to meet the country’s growing summer power generation and water desalination needs, according to the latest data released by Kuwait’s electricity and water ministry.
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The Mideast Gulf state burned around 129,000 b/d of crude in September, down 22pc from August, but still more than eight times higher than the same period last year, the data showed.
Summer crude burn peaked at 184,000 b/d in July, before easing to 165,000 b/d in August. September was the fourth straight month in which Kuwaiti power and water plants have burned more than 100,000 b/d.
Crude consumption averaged 82,000 b/d from January through September, compared to just 11,600 b/d in the same period of 2019.
The month-on-month fall in crude burn followed a drop in temperatures. This meant Kuwait’s peak load eased to an average of 13,085MW from 13,695 GW in August. This was still up from 12,460GW in September 2019, however.
One of the reasons for the increased crude burn is the lower volume of associated gas available due to Kuwait’s commitments to limit crude production under the ongoing Opec+ agreement. In September 2019, state-owned KPC’s upstream arm KOC provided an average of 1.63bn ft³/d of gas. But this September, with production restricted, it has only been able to supply 1.33bn ft³/d, down nearly 20pc.
Lower demand from crude buyers has also given Kuwait excess volumes to burn, allowing it to replace fuel oil as the main liquid fuel for power generation.
Kuwait burned 40,000 b/d of heavy fuel oil, up 42pc from 28,000 b/d in August. The use of fuel oil has averaged just over 55,000 b/d, less than half the volume used from January to September 2019.
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