Coal, renewables, nuclear and decreased year-on-year electricity demand are all eating into US natural gas-fired power generation. Increased installed wind power capacity played a major role, as developers rushed to achieve project eligibility ahead of scheduled end-2012 PTC expiration, according to Genscape data.
“Year-to-date gas-fired generation continues to trail 2012 by 13%. It has lost considerable ground to coal-fired generation and weaker power demand, as well as stronger renewable generation and nuclear output. Coal-fired generation is up 65,530GWh (+5%) year-to-date, renewables are up 24,464GWh (+6%), and nuclear output is up 9,718GWh (+2%).” – Genscape
Weather put downward pressure on electricity demand, as California and Arizona experienced cooler seasonal conditions that reduced cooling load, while warmer temperatures in the Midwestern and Eastern US “prevented early heating load events,” Genscape said.
EIA Weekly Natural Gas Storage Report
Genscape missed slightly with its 33Bcf gas injection forecast for the week ending November 1st when EIA yesterday reported a net increase of 35 Bcf from the previous week. “Stocks were 112 Bcf less than last year at this time and 57 Bcf above the 5-year average of 3,757 Bcf,” according to the storage report. Stocks were above the 5-year average in all regions except the East where gas in storage was 98 Bcf below the 5-year average.
The December NYMEX natural gas contract was up slightly in Friday morning trading at $3.56/MMBtu.