Market Snapshot: Crude Oil Exports by Rail

Release date: 2014-10-22

In the second quarter of 2014, Canadian crude oil exported by rail decreased slightly relative to the previous quarter to approximately 163,000 barrels per day (25 900 cubic metres per day). This was a 1.3 per cent decrease from the previous quarter. Notwithstanding this recent decrease, overall crude-by-rail exports have increased sharply over the last two years.

The value of crude by rail exports was approximately C$2.65 billion in the first half of 2014. This compares to total of C$4.1 billion for all of 2013.

The average export price of crude-by-rail shipments in the second quarter of 2014 was approximately C$94.50 per barrel (C$594.60 per cubic metre), compared to C$86.20 per barrel (C$542.37 per cubic metre) for the same period in 2013.

Figure Source and Data

Source: Canadian Crude Oil Exports by Rail - Quarterly Data
Crude oil includes Canadian crude oil and/or equivalent. It does not include exports of Canadian refined petroleum products.

Canadian Crude Oil Exports by Rail - Quarterly Data
(bbl per day)
(m³ per day)
2012 - Q1 (Jan-Mar) 15,980 2 539
2012 - Q2 (Apr-Jun) 31,907 5 070
2012 - Q3 (Jul-Sep) 57,257 9 099
2012 - Q4 (Oct-Dec) 79,763 12 675
2013 - Q1 (Jan-Mar) 105,632 16 786
2013 - Q2 (Apr-Jun) 133,446 21 206
2013 - Q3 (Jul-Sep) 123,765 19 668
2013 - Q4 (Oct-Dec) 148,929 23 666
2014 - Q1 (Jan-Mar) 165,254 26 261
2014 - Q2 (Apr-Jun) 163,063 25 912

In the face of growing western Canadian crude oil production, producers are increasingly relying on rail options to transport their output to U.S. markets. Rail exports from Canada during the second quarter of 2014 represented 5.85 per cent of total crude oil exports, compared to 5.25 per cent in the second quarter of 2013.

Quarterly data on crude oil exports by rail is available on the NEB website. Data on total crude oil exports is available here.

Date modified: