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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
Tuesday May 21, 2019   
There is some clarity starting to develop in the forward weather models. Over the past week NOAA and WSI both published their forecasts for June confirming an above normal bias for the East and a below normal bias for the West. The outlooks are extending the near term forecasts and now have a higher power burn estimate for the Gulf and Northeast. The path of increased demand runs right along the Transco Pipeline which utilizes Gulf storage caverns to meet the changes in pressures. While the East balancing is getting tighter, the West is going in the opposite direction. Not only are they going to see strong Pacific Northwest hydro power output over the next few weeks the weather models are dropping the probability for heat events. That is putting downward pressure on ... » read more
Monday May 20, 2019   
This past Friday, the daily EnergyGPS Newsletter Blog focused on the CAISO Summer Assessment report published recently while the weekly Newsletter Article titled 'Calfornia's Summer Balance' took a look at where the rubber was going to really meet the road come Q3-2019.  If you are new to the EnergyGPS Newsletter platform, here is a quick summary of the product offerings at your disposal for a nominal monthly/annual fee.  Figure 1 | EnergyGPS Newsletter Platform The figure above details each product offering in a little more detail as the daily blogs are free to anyone who signs up.  We have a Silver package that gives you access to the historical daily blogs as the content is informative and can be re-read at anytime.  The Gold package gives the user access to ... » read more
Friday May 17, 2019   
CAISO released its 2019 Summer Assessment on May 8 and it contains good news.  Californians can keep their refrigerators stocked with perishables as CAISO is reporting significantly lower probabilities of declared emergencies (Table 1). Table 1 |  CAISO Summer Assessments: Probability* of Declared Alerts *Probability of occurrence of any durationSource: CAISO 2018 and 2019 Summer Assessments **2019 sensitivity assumes low hydro (2018 Calif. Conditions), DSW heat storm, and imports capped at 9,300 MW   The reason for these lower probabilities?  Mostly, CAISO points to in-state hydro: California snow water reached ~160% of normal, compared to ~ 55% in 2018 (Figure 1).  Figure 1 | California Statewide Snow Water as of May 2019 Source: CDWR and EnergyGPS This is ... » read more
Thursday May 16, 2019   
With all the talk of carbon reform going on recently, we decided to take a look at a micro level and consider whether our household’s choice of appliances are optimal. The easy choice would be to just opt for electric since there isn’t a fossil fuel burning in your home, but we will look at the carbon produced from electric generation as well to capture the bigger picture. While there are several appliances found in an average home, we will concentrate on the furnaces and stovetops as they have a corresponding gas fueled counterpart. Figure 1 | Gas vs Electric In order to look at the carbon footprint of electric appliances, let’s first take a look at the electric grid. No major RTO has been able to transition to a carbon free grid yet which means that there are some ... » read more
Wednesday May 15, 2019   
There have been a number of changes to both supply and demand that have created a very loose balancing condition for most of this spring. But we are now starting to see the tide shift in the other direction. Cash prices have been supportive in Texas and the Gulf over the past few days despite the return of several generation units from seasonal maintenance. Lower production along with higher net load are tightening the natural gas balancing. As we move into next week we see only tighter conditions. The results should mark a bottom in the natural gas pricing before we transition to summer.  It first starts with production. The increase in volumes this spring have been particularly bearish for basis prices in West Texas. Record low daily indices have now started to weigh ... » read more
Tuesday May 14, 2019   
Over the past couple of years now, we have had the privilege of interacting with Randy Hardy on a monthly basis as he makes his way down to Portland for other business.  In recent conversations with him, he has been discussing the future capacity markets in the Pacific Northwest.  In today's blog we have decided to publish both Randy Hardy and Larry Kitchen's findings as it will be a point of discussion at a conference being held in Portland tomorrow.   The article is attached to this thread for you reading pleasure.   ... » read more
Monday May 13, 2019   
If you are a basketball fan, the two Game 7 conference semi-finals were flat out amazing as the Portland Trailblazers came back from being down by 17 points to win on some clutch shooting by CJ McCollum and free throws by Evan Turner.  Over in the East, the showdown between the Toronto Raptors and the Philadelphia 76'ers turned out to be even better as Kawhi Leonard hit a fade away 20 footer over the 7 foot 1 inch Joel Embid as the clock stuck 0:00 to win by two points.  If you watched the game live, the shot was one of the most amazing in the history of basketball as the high arch made its way to the rim where it hit the front, bounced up, hit the back base, bounced a third time of the iron only to hit the rim one last time before seeing the ball go through the net.  Game ... » read more
Friday May 10, 2019   
On May 8th, ERCOT released the final Seasonal Assessment of Resource Adequacy (SARA) for summer of 2019 and updated Capacity, Demand and Reserve (CDR) report (http://www.ercot.com/news/releases/show/181248). These are ERCOT planning documents about expected future demand, supply, and the resultant reserve margins. There is a lot to unpack in these documents – what projects have been completed, what the changes in generator’s plans are, and other topics. One variable that stands out to me is the focus on demand. ERCOT is forecasting significant demand growth over the coming years, between 2.5-3.0% per year. Nonetheless, reserve margins continue to inch up in the short-term, thanks to new renewables, uprates from existing generation, and the return to service from mothballed ... » read more
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