(MENAFN) An official data showed that Saudi Arabia has burnt record volumes of crude oil last summer, contrary to its target of using more gas for power generation to save crude for export, Reuters reported.
According to the Joint Oil Data Initiative (JODI), the Gulf Kingdom burned an average of 763,250 barrels per day (bpd) of crude during the peak period from early June through September, up from 701,250 bpd a year earlier and 747,750 bpd in the previous record summer of 2010.
Last March, Saudi Oil Minister Ali al-Naimi said that more natural gas should be available from fields that only produce gas to meet peak summer power demand, potentially saving millions of barrels of valuable crude for export.
The plan was to boost output from Saudi Aramco's Karan gas field first, which was completed ahead of schedule, helping boost Saudi gas production by 18 percent over summer, Aramco said in October.
Karan, which can pump gas free from Opec-constrained crude oil fields, should save tens of millions of barrels of crude for export over coming years.
But a jump in power demand and tight supplies of alternative fuels for electricity and sea-water desalination sucked in millions more Saudi crude barrels for burning this year.
Saudi Arabia is by far the largest user of crude oil for power generation, with most countries outside the Middle East cutting back oil-fired power generation long ago in favour of gas, nuclear and renewable energy sources.