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Wednesday Jun 5, 2019   
Cameron LNG announced their first commissioning project one week ago with sendouts at the facility moving up from zero to .5 BCF per day. the site even got a visit from President Trump. The liquefaction demand did not last long. Prior to the start of June the facility has dropped its activity back to zero which took total LNG liquefaction back from 5.5 to 5 BCF. This drop off in demand had a big impact on the cash prices in the Houston Shipchannel. Since the beginning of April the HSC cash prices have fallen from $2.75 to $2.35.  Figure 1 | LNG Sendouts for May 28 - June 4 While this was a big announcement for the start up of the facility, Cameron also had some disappointing news. The second and third trains, which were expected to start up at the end of this year have now been ... » read more
Tuesday Jun 4, 2019   
It is coming up to almost nine months to the day that the Enbridge Pipeline explosion occurred up in British Columbia.  On that nice fall day back in October 2018, the market was humming along when all of a sudden a big ball of fire rose up from the ground and the natural gas grid popped into emergency mode as the 36 inch pipe that connected the British Columbia production to the Pacific Northwest via the Sumas compressor. In fact, this is the point that Spectra BC /Westcoast Pipeline hands over the keys to Northwest Pipeline.  It is the artery that feeds the demand down through Seattle/Tacoma area, heads down I-5 and touches several power plants along the way and eventually has a look at Jackson Prairie storage of heads out to California and/or back to the Rockies via the ... » read more
Monday Jun 3, 2019   
Heading into last summer, ERCOT's implied heat rates were beyond levels needed for every natural gas to be running as the grid was exposed to the coal retirements seen to start the year (January 2018).  As it turned out, all hands were on deck as the grid was able to keep the lights on without really feeling too frantic most of the summer.  When you look back on it, Mother Nature was in a good mood when it came to how much wind she would have hitting the grid during the month of August. Figure 1 | ERCOT's Monthly Wind Breakdown If you look at the chart above, the top pane represents the calculated capacity factor for all the wind that showed up in ERCOT by month since 2016.  The bottom pane illustrates the two components of the capacity fact, the first being the ... » read more
Friday May 31, 2019   
State legislators in the Western United States have been busy in recent months. The following legislation has passed in 2019[1]: SB 358 – Nevada RPS: Current RPS set at 25%. Increases RPS to 50% by 2030. Requires 100% carbon free by 2050. (Signed into law on Earth Day) SB 489 – New Mexico Energy Transition Act: Renewable requirement equals 50% by 2030, 80% by 2040, and 100% by 2045. (Signed into law on March 22nd) HB 1261 – Colorado Carbon Emissions Reductions: Targets GHG reductions below 2005 levels of 26% by 2025, 50% by 2030, and 90% by 2050. (Signed into law on May 30th) SB 5116 – Washington 100% Clean: No coal in rates by 2025, 80% carbon free + 20% WECC RECs by 2030, and 100% carbon free by 2045. (Signed into law on May 7th) HB 2020 – Oregon Cap and ... » read more
Thursday May 30, 2019   
There has been a lot of buzz recently over the series finale of Game of Thrones. As perhaps the most popular fantasy TV show came to a close, winter also slid into the background. It is no coincidence that with the end of the show, summer is just now making its way onto the board with less than a month to go before the seasons officially change. However, we have already seen heat flare up throughout the Northeast with cold temperatures making their way out of the region. Figure 1 | Summer is Coming Taking a look at the temperatures in Washington DC, highs actually reached up into the 90s over the long weekend. This caused demand to look more like a weekday despite the off peak lull. Both the South and the West throughout the PJM footprint also saw high temperatures driving demand past ... » read more
Wednesday May 29, 2019   
This has been a mild spring for most of the country. The cooling degree day count has trended below normal for most of the Lower 48 outside of the Southeast. The lack of cooling load has kept the power burn demand in check allowing a robust injection season. But over the past week we are seeing a big change in temperatures particularly in Georgia and the Carolinas. Daytime highs have soared to near triple digits. The associated climb in demand has caused a big shift in the regional supply/demand balances. As a result we are expecting the EIA to report a withdrawal for the South Central salt storage caverns in this week's inventory report.   Figure 1 | Atlanta Temperature History with Average and Forecast The net load for the Southeast is now well above the last two years. » read more
Tuesday May 28, 2019   
If you have followed the National Basketball Association (NBA) playoffs this year, you have once again seen the Golden State Warriors make it back to the Finals be sweeping the Portland Trailblazers after taking the Houston Rockets in 6 games.  Over in the LeBron-less East, the Toronto Raptors took on the Milwaukee Bucks who were led by the Greek-Freak (Giannis Antetokounmpo).  After going down 0-2 in the best of a seven game series, the Raptors rattled off four straight wins to capture the series 4-2.  In the four wins, Kwahi Leonard illustrated why he is one of the best players in the league as he carried his team to victory on the road in the crucial game 5 and brought the Eastern Conference Championship to Toronto by dominating the boards and defensive end of the ... » read more
Friday May 24, 2019   
Memorial Day is right around the corner, which means we are fast approaching the summer peak load season in ERCOT. Earlier this month, ERCOT released its May 2019 Capacity, Demand, and Reserves Report (CDR). While the version published in May does not include the upcoming summer 2019 season, it does provide an update on changes in the generator queue, as well as changes to generator retirements (Gibbons Creek will be on indefinite mothball status after 6/1/2019). For the summer 2020 peak load season, ERCOT’s estimate of the planning reserve margin (percentage of generation resources above forecast peak load) is 10.5%. When calculating this value, ERCOT assigns a reliability percentage to each type of generation resource. Thermal resources (gas, coal) receive a 100% reliability ... » read more
Thursday May 23, 2019   
The first real heat wave hit the Northeast over this weekend giving the region a taste of summer. Temperatures picked up with highs reaching nearly 90 degrees drawing on cooling demand throughout the PJM footprint. The electrical demand brought generation online throughout the major ISOs just ahead of the official summer season. While the weather quickly moderated back down with Tuesday falling back within normal range, another hot flash is expected to make its way into the region with temperatures relatively close to what we saw earlier this week. Taking a look ISO’s reactions should give us some idea of how the next hot spell should affect the region. Figure 1 | Actual & Forecast Temperatures in Columbus, Ohio PJM saw the worst of it with the warm temperatures gaining ground ... » read more
Wednesday May 22, 2019   
if you have been watching the National Basketball Association (NBA) playoffs over the past couple of weeks, you have seen that the Golden State Warriors took care of business by sweeping the Portland Trailblazers in the Western Conference Finals. The way it works is two teams play a best of 7 game series to see who will advance to the finals.  That means that the first team to 4 wins advantage and as it turned out the Warriors swept the Blazers by winning the first four games, despite having three key players injured.  That is quite impressive but what is more impressive is the fact that this will be the Warriors 5th straight appearance in the NBA Finals. Figure 1 | Golden State Warriors Advancing to the NBA Finals This is an impressive feat if you stop and think ... » read more
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