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Thursday Oct 29, 2020   
The end of October is right around the corner but that does not give much hope to the residence in California that are fighting off more fires that have started over the past fews days.  Places such as Orange County are now being evacuated after several areas in Northern California have been running from the flames for weeks now.  If you recall, the Pacific Northwest got into the fray in September while Colorado was brought in a couple of weeks ago.  The former was such a rare occurrence as the skies were filled with ash for over a week while firefighters were out in the battle field trying to keep the flames from entering the Portland metro area.  The latter has created a similar situation near Fort Collins and the north side of Denver prior to the winter chill moving ... » read more
Wednesday Oct 28, 2020   
The 1990's movie "The Hunt for Red October" is a spy-thriller where a senior Lithuanian submarine captain, played by Sean Connery, has a plant to defect but is met with strong opposition from his Soviet Navy and a misconception from the US Armed Forces.  It depicted the tensions of between the Soviet Union and the United States during late Cold War era.  As you work through the movie you can feel the tension as well as the direction the captain wants to go and where the director wants the audience to take their mind.  Some of the critics' reviews were such that stated the movie was colorful and exciting but nothing takes you by surprise as you process what is happening to each country at the time.  This is a resemblance of the natural gas market this past month as we ... » read more
Tuesday Oct 27, 2020   
One month ago there was talk in the industry that the storage capacity issues would cause cash prices to trade at a steep discount to the futures. Prior to the October settle the Henry Hub cash was trading at a $1.38 discount to the November futures reflecting the injection limitations particularly in the Gulf. The assumption was that without a big demand shift there would be little chance for cash strength prior to a ramp up in winter heating load. In prior years it was not unusual to see storage injections in the Gulf run right through the middle of November. But this year has been a very different track. Pipeline maintenance, hurricanes, LNG sendout increases, cold weather and gains in Southeast power burns have tightened the physical cash market. Not only is the storage ... » read more
Monday Oct 26, 2020   
Doing my daily Sunday scanning of the professional football games and the weather conditions, you could not help but stop and pause where they were showing the Denver Broncos home stadium Sunday morning.  They were preparing to play host to the Kansas City Chiefs later in the day by having the crew take their snow blowers to the advtisement banners that were replacing the crowd in the first section of seats around the stadium's actual field.  Yes, snow blowers as the temperatures were dropping and the precipitation in the metro area was that of snowflakes.  It was a stark reminder of just how loyal sports fans are as the stadium would have been full of people prior to the game where they would have been bundled up for the most part (a few shirtless with some painted symbols ... » read more
Friday Oct 23, 2020   
Denver has their basketball Nuggets, who actually took on two game sevens only to run out of gas against the Los Angeles Lakers in the Western Conference Finals while in the bubble.  When it comes to food, some of the most notable nuggets out there are served under the 'Golden Arches' known as McDonalds.  The final type of nugget that comes to mind is the one the San Francisco football team is named after, which is the 49'ers.  The 49'ers nickname defines the minor or other person that took part in the 1849 California Gold Rush where the search for gold nuggets is part of the state's legacy. Figure 1 | Nuggets Abound Speaking of legacy, over the years the California energy markets have been blazing their own trail by deregulating in the late 1990's, implementing a ... » read more
Thursday Oct 22, 2020   
In the sports world, one of the many phrases that became popular over the years comes from Jimmy Johnson who at the time was the head coach of the Dallas Cowboys.  He took the job of America's Team under new owner Jerry Jones, who just so happened to be Jimmy's college teammate at the University of Arkansas.  Jerry let go of then legendary coach Tom Landry as the team was have a couple of dismal years after winning Super Bowls with Roger Stabauch as the quarterback.  They had one super star to speak of by the name of Hershal Walker, who was in his prime as a running back in this league.  As the story is told, they were able to draft a quarterback by the name of Troy Aikmen and make a blockbuster trade mid-year early in Jimmy’s coaching career.  The basically ... » read more
Wednesday Oct 21, 2020   
Northwest Pipeline has been under a force majeure condition since the 16th due to remediation needs in the Goldendale-Willard corridor. Part of the pipe had to be cut out and replaced, as a result the capacity through the path had gone to zero.  A notice came out yesterday stating that the work was completed successfully and that that gas will be able to start flowing east to west once again.  The issue now is that the work around the Roosevelt and Goldendale corridor will be continuing on through November 2nd.  Such work is restricting the flow capacity at Roosevelt where it will remain around the .4 BCF mark for the balance of the month.  This is an increase compared to the recent Goldendale-Willard work mentioned above but right in-line to the capacity we were ... » read more
Tuesday Oct 20, 2020   
Since the crude oil crash in April the Alberta Intra demand has been hampered by the slowdown in oil sands production and COVID lock down actions. Through the whole summer the demand had been under similar load days from 2018 and 2019. But since the last week in September the demand has been making a steady climb back to normal. It culminated this week with Nova sendouts pushing all the way up to 5.8 BCF. That is the first time the demand has printed above previous years since last winter. At first glance the jump in demand would just be a reflection of the bitter cold weather they are experiencing. Departures in the province have dropped to 20 degrees below normal. But not so fast. The recovery started weeks ago suggesting that the Alberta economy is on the mend. Figure 1 | ... » read more
Monday Oct 19, 2020   
It seems like it has been awhile since we have talked about California solar curtailments as they pertain to the CAISO market.  If you recall the last time we focused on the volume being curtailed it was last spring when the Covid-19 virus was pushing countries and states into full lockdown mode and the economic downturn was evident throughout.  The month of April is starting to stick out as a month that has too much solar as both local and system curtailments were present every day with the former well above previous years while the latter tends to pick up steam as the power demand is low and the the daylight hours are starting to get longer hence more solar generation is being produced. Figure 1 | CAISO Total Curtailments Looking at the individual parts (local and system) ... » read more
Friday Oct 16, 2020   
Determining the shape value of a resource is a deceptively simple task. It is simple because the calculation is an easy one: for a given time period, take the generation-weighted price and divide by the flat average price. It is deceptive because there’s more to it than just what prices appear at what times of day. Before continuing, some definitions will be useful: As-Generated Shape Value is the historical, real-time, as-generated production-weighted price divided by historical, real-time, average price. 12x24 Shape Value is calculated as historical, real-time, 12x24-weighted price divided by historical, real-time, average price. This metric gets at the value of the resource if its generation were identical on each day of a given month. Negative Covariance is calculated as the ... » read more
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