Virginia Power asked the State Corporation Commission Tuesdayfor authority to build and operate five natural gas-firedcombustion turbines to generate power for the utility’s two millioncustomers during peak demand periods.
Articles from Heat
Cash was king for most of the month of June; oftentimes tradingat a premium to the Nymex futures contract. But that seems like adistant memory as cash prices shrugged off some of the season’shottest temperatures to slip, for the second day in a row, by up to5 cents almost across the board. While some traders expressedsurprise at the weakness, others said this is a sign the Nymexscreen is regaining control of market direction.
FERC turned the heat on pipeline competition in the Colorado andWyoming markets up a notch or two last week when it gave KNWattenberg Transmission the go-ahead to start work on its proposed109-mile Front Runner pipeline project, and gave competitorsWyoming Interstate (WIC) and Colorado Interstate Gas (CIG) thegreen light to carry out the construction of new compression andmetering facilities.
With the exception of Western and Rockies delivery points,natural gas prices began the new week flat or leaning downward acouple of cents. There was support resulting from supplyconstraints in the San Juan Basin and forecasts for above normaltemperatures in the Rockies. However, cash prices for the rest ofthe country appeared to be held back by a weakening Nymex futuresscreen and moderate temperatures in major northeastern markets,sources said.
A continuation of intense heat in the Eastern U.S. lentfundamental support to gas markets in the region Friday, keepingcash prices flat to slightly higher or lower for the weekend.Again, though, it was a case of “not so” in the San Juan Basin,Rockies and California. Although east-of-California markets sawhigh temperatures approaching or surpassing 100 degrees, a dearthof demand from the Golden State and the unrealized threat of an OFOon El Paso caused gas to back up into the San Juan-Blanco pool,resulting in a steep dive of nearly 30 cents. One source, whopicked up an early Blanco package at $1.78, about a dime down fromThursday, paid only $1.59 near the end of trading.
Natural gas producers sharply criticized an electric industryproposal that seeks to resolve commercial disputes through disputeresolution as a precursor to them being filed at FERC. The aim ofthe proposed plan is to streamline the complaint process at theCommission, electric officials say.
Heavy air conditioning load and a tightening of supplyavailability not only generated a late rebound in bidweek pricesFriday but also pushed up last-of-May and early June aftermarketnumbers in nearly all Eastern, Gulf Coast and Midcontinent/Midwestmarkets. Waha and Permian Basin gas, supported by Texas andMidcontinent cooling demand, also was rising above index levels.But in the generally cool West, weekend and 1st-of-month swingprices tended to go down by a few cents.
Monday’s cash trading found support from record hightemperatures in the South and El Paso’s Blanco compressor stationoutage but were kept in check by softening futures prices. Mostspot market points managed modest gains of about 3-5 cents.Southwestern and Rockies points, however, logged gains of nearly adime.
A combination of heat and cold served to keep cash prices on therise again Tuesday. Gains were fairly modest at a nickel or less inthe Gulf Coast, Midcontinent/Midwest and East Coast markets. Theywere primarily supported by continuing air conditioning load in theSouth.
The congressional debate over electricity restructuring so farhas focused on whether its should be done as comprehensivelegislation or as piecemeal reform of the Public Utility HoldingCompany Act (PUHCA), but a third option may be tossed into the fraysoon.