The general director of Mexico’s oil and gas monopoly Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex) said last week that while he supports more private investments in certain sectors to make the country’s energy resources more efficient, the oil and gas industry will remain under government control. Raul Munoz Leos agreed that Mexico faces energy problems unless changes are made, but said the country can get from here to there without privatization.
Articles from Division
Enron Energy Services (EES) has agreed to manage energy supplyfor Pilkington North America Inc., a division of the UK-based glassmanufacturer, for a 10-year period in a deal valued in excess of$500 million. It covers nine of Pilkington’s U.S. facilitieslocated in North Carolina, Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio, Michigan,Illinois and California.
Avista Corp., rocked by early cold weather and increased loads that reduced profit within its utilities division, now expects to report better-than-expected earnings for the fourth quarter, driven by its non-regulated energy trading arm, Avista Energy. The Spokane, WA-based company’s consolidated fourth quarter diluted earnings will exceed $.50 per share, based on results form the first two months of the quarter. The earnings would be well above the consensus figure of $.09, with earnings ranging between $.05 and $.17, according to seven analysts surveyed by First Call/Thomson Financial. The improved performance by the energy arm offset predicted losses within Avista Utilities, which “continues to be affected by cold weather that has increased loads.” The increased loads have led to higher purchased power costs that are not currently being recovered from customers or included in power cost deferrals. Ironically, Avista’s second quarter earnings, reported in June, were driven down by Avista Energy because of what the company called errors in its wholesale trading decisions made a few months earlier (see NGI, June 26). However, company officials predicted then that the energy arm would recover and lead the way toward better economic health for the entire company by the end of this year. Despite its comeback, there has been fallout within the company, with CEO Tom Matthews resigning in early November. Also last month, a federal investigation was launched into the trading practices of the company. Federal investigators have begun looking into possible energy futures trading rule violations that may have occurred two years ago at a Houston subsidiary.
Following an East-West swing market division the day before,everybody was on the same page Tuesday. Except for merely smallgains at western points where Canadian gas is traded (i.e., Sumas,Stanfield, intra-Alberta), double-digit increases reigned. Octobernumbers also were reported rising.
PENNSAFE, a division of Pennsylvania’s Dept. of Labor andIndustry, has filed a complaint in district court against EquitableGas Co., citing the failure of the utility to accurately mark itsline which resulted in the death of a McKeesport, PA, woman.
William A. (Andy) Lang has joined Coast Energy Group (CEG), aSugar Land, TX division of CornerStone Propane Partners L.P., aspresident and COO. Lang most recently directed activities of MHPStorage as head of NiSource’s EnergyUSA-TPC affiliate. Prior tothat he was a managing director of Southern Co. Energy Marketingand senior vice president at Vastar Resources. Coast Energy, a fullservice energy solutions company, supplies, purchases, processesand markets over 48,000 b/d of natural gas liquids.