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Friday Oct 18, 2019   
The Western markets have grabbed the attention of many over the past few years as SoCal Gas's infrastructure seemed to be falling apart starting with Aliso Canyon and then moving to the pipelines themselves as a fire broke out around the Mojave compressor.  The constrainted the North Zone of SoCal's system and as a result solidified SoCal Citygate as the gas hub that would get all the attention in the cash market as there were scenarios where the gas volume would not be enough to go around.  When this occurred, SoCal Gas has tiered penalities on days when there were low OFO's (Operational Flow Order) on the system.   Figure 1 | Socal Citygate Cash Prices  This led to several days, early in the week, where SoCal Citygate would trade well over any other hub in the ... » read more
Thursday Oct 17, 2019   
Over the past few weeks, the Pacific Northwest gas system has been restricted in a way that the Jackson Prairie storage facility has not been able to pull gas out of the ground.  In essence, it has not been able to help balance the system at a time Mother Nature has brought in colder weather to the region.  Yesterday, Northwest Pipe sent out a notice stating the work is now completed and normal operations at Jackson Prairie will be in play starting on the 18th.  Figure 1 | Northwest Pipeline Critical Notice - Jackson Prairie This will be another lever that will be accessible once the big wind generation uptick shifts back down and natural gas-fired power plants are needed to help balance the system.  In fact, if you look at the Roosevelt Compressor flows in the figure ... » read more
Wednesday Oct 16, 2019   
The weather forecasts have been adding HDDs to the 11-15 day forecast and that alone has prompted the November contract to move up roughly $0.15 since the open on Monday. This is a pretty big move all things considered.   Figure 1 | HDD Accumulation broken down by Day Buckets ** WSI Data The increase we are talking about can be seen in the following graph as the blue line represents the most recent model run and compares it to last year on same day and what normal HDDs look like given the temperatures in the major city airports. Figure 2 | HDD Accumulation for Days 1 -15 The moment you slice throgh last year's numbers  it is cold as the winter timeframe started out rather cold in 2018.  We will continue to monitor the direction of the HDD totals by region as the ... » read more
Tuesday Oct 15, 2019   
In gymnastics, a perfect score is a 10.0 and is reflective of an athlete doing everything technically correct along with have some major difficulty in the routine itself.  The scoring is based on experienced judges who have a trained eye to look at the sub-items tied to the two categories mentioned.  If you are watching a local event, college competition or the Olymics, it is a rare but beautiful occurance when you get to witness the athlete actual produce such a score. Figure 1 | The Perfect 10 in Gymnastics In the energy world, specifically the Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) sector, the perfect score level continues to rise with the new facilities going live over the years.  It was a commonplace to have the perfect score be as low as 2-3 BCF/d when things first started only ... » read more
Monday Oct 14, 2019   
This past January, ERCOT adopted a proposed set of changes from the Public Utility Commission of Texas. These changes, affecting the Operating Reserve Demand Curve adder (ORDC), were set to take place in the beginning of 2019 and the beginning of 2020. The first change was in effect this past summer and contributed to the sky-high prices in August. Now, at the end of the summer, it’s time to look ahead at the upcoming second change. The changes cause the ORDC to trigger more often and to have a higher value when triggered than previously. EGPS calculated the ORDC for the prices this past June-September using both the old method and the new method. The figure below shows an example day, July 30. Figure 1 | ORDC New vs Old Methodology Comparison In this figure, Historical LMP is the ... » read more
Friday Oct 11, 2019   
A couple of things happened this week that brough back old memories as well as defined the era that we live in when it comes to safety/litigation risk.  The first item is detailed in this week's Newsletter article titled 'The Constraint of Day', if you would like purchase the report a la carte you can click on the link provided.  You can also sign up for the EnergyGPS Gold Package and have access to all the historical articles as well as any future documents released by us.  Our Platinum Package is one step above the Gold Package since you also receive our Monthly Power/Natural Gas Report as well as any Special Report we publish. For example, our last Special Report covered 'The Sumas Story' while our upcoming one will detail how ERCOT's Reserve Pricing is ... » read more
Thursday Oct 10, 2019   
The recent weather extremes over the last couple weeks have finally given way to moderate weather. In the Northeast, temperatures have shifted into a comfortable range calling few degree days onto the board. With weather across the country shifting into the mild shoulder season, demand for generation has declined. Facilities have begun dropping offline during this period of low demand in order to perform much needed maintenance in order to prepare for the upcoming winter. The PJM outage report exemplifies the increase over the autumn shoulder season. We can see that generation outages started picking up after the start of September and continued to grow moving deeper into the shoulder season. Outages picked up throughout October, but it appears that peak outages have not yet made their ... » read more
Wednesday Oct 9, 2019   
As we start to move into the middle third of October, the weather starts to feel a little brisk in the mornings as the overnight lows are dropping across the country.  In the power markets, this is usually the time of year when planned maintenance occurs for both the power plants and transmission lines that have been in play most of the summer.  The most noteable planned outage sector is the nuclear fleet as they have to refuel and do their mandatory checks and balances per the Nuclear Regulatory Commission protocals/standards. Figure 1 | Nuclear Daily Outage Volume - Year on Year Comparison In the West, we see the impact to such a fleet in both Northern California and the Desert Southwest has a Diablo Canyon and a Palo Verde unit offline at this time.  Over in ERCOT, a ... » read more
Tuesday Oct 8, 2019   
Summer came to an abrupt end in the Northeast and Midwest this weekend when daytime highs made one of the most drastic changes we have ever seen. After bumping along for most of the summer in the low 90's, the temperature highs fell off to the low 70's. No smooth transition to fall weather was seen. It was just a straight drop of 20 degrees. This had a big influence on the power burns. Combined PJM, New England and New York net load fell from 132 to 90 GWa overnight and noting the advantage gas generation had in the power dispatch almost all the change came down to a drop off in cooling related gas demand.    Figure 1 | Pittsburgh Highs, Lows and Forecast Temperatures (F) The drop off in power burns created excess volume in the balancing which had to be directed to storage. » read more
Monday Oct 7, 2019   
Over the past few days, the EnergyGPS Newsletter product has been putting content tied to both the daily blog and the Gold/Platinum packages.  The topic of the former was tied Pacific Northwest Regional Resource Adequency while the latter focused on the Pacific Northwest Sumas gas market, the regional supply/demand Sandboxes while the upcoming article will focus on looming capacity Shortfall in the Pacific Northwest. Starting with The Sumas Story, the Platinum package specail report breaks down how the Pacific Northwest power and natural gas grid gets co-mingled quickly when circumstances tied rising rescom demand and limited transport capacity are presented with a power sector that needs the power plants on Northwest Pipe to generate the power.  We saw this occurr all of ... » read more
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