In a country attempting to embrace electricity restructuring,it’s no wonder that breakdowns like those experienced in Californiacan shake the foundation of programs 1,000 miles away. Not trueaccording to the Center for the Advancement of Energy Markets'(CAEM) latest Retail Energy Deregulation Index (RED Index) releasedlast week, which actually showed that a number of states arerecording progress.
Articles from Choice
The floodgates of customer choice for electric power users swungopen in New Jersey last week and among the first out the door was agroup, anchored by chemical manufacturers, of 64 large energy userstaking 360 MW and 843 federal government facilities, including theStatue of Liberty. (see report following)
Fresh news means everything in commodities trading and naturalgas traders had their choice of bearish factors to point toyesterday. The one-two combo of the storage surplus and coolerweather put sellers in the driver’s seat once again, and theyreacted swiftly Wednesday evening by pushing the market lower inthe after hours Access trading session. The July contract Thursday,tumbled 10.5 cents to finish at $2.355 in heavy trading.
South Jersey Gas Co. filed a petition with New Jersey’s Board ofPublic Utilities (BPU) to increase eligibility in its customerchoice pilot program from 25,000 to 50,000. The announcement marksthe second time in the past 12 months the utility has increased thesize of its pilot. The BPU has set Dec. 31 as a deadline to definecomplete statewide gas deregulation. South Jersey said 22,000customers have participated in the program. The utility serves260,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers in thestate.
Connectiv Power Delivery, the utility subsidiary of Connectiv,announced its Natural Gas Choice Program for Delaware last week,enabling 15,000 residential and 1,500 small commercial customers tochoose their gas supplier as early as July 1. The program will lastfor two years, and will determine if the freedom to choose asupplier should be offered to all of Connectiv’s gas customers inDelaware.
Connectiv Power Delivery, the utility subsidiary of Connectiv,announced its Natural Gas Choice Program for Delaware Tuesday,enabling 15,000 residential and 1,500 small commercial customers tochoose their gas supplier as early as July 1. The program will lastfor two years, at which point it will go under full review todetermine if the freedom to choose a supplier should be offered toall of Connectiv’s gas customers in Delaware.
Bears had their choice of reasons for continuing to push thefutures market lower Thursday: forecasts calling for warmingweather, an unremarkable storage report, and follow-through sellingpressure. And so when the February contract opened more than anickel below Wednesday’s low, the price rout was on yesterday. Thesell-off sent the prompt month 9.5-cents lower to settle at $1.836.
South Jersey Gas received approval from the New Jersey Board ofPublic Utilities to expand its residential transportation programallowing 12,500 more customers to select an independent natural gasmarketer. “Last year, 13,000 customers tested the uncharted watersof deregulation by signing up with an independent marketer,” saidCharles Biscieglia, president of South Jersey. “Finding ways tohelp our customers reduce energy costs is important to us andanything we can do to create a potential for savings is a positivestep.” Enrollment for the expanded program closes July 31, 1999.South Jersey serves 260,000 residential, commercial and industrialcustomers in Atlantic, Cape May, Cumberland, Salem, and significantportions of Camden, Gloucester and Burlington counties.