The “catastrophic” impact of anemic crude oil prices on domesticoil and gas producers will require Congress and the Clintonadministration to take “extraordinary” measures to resuscitate an”industry that is on its knees,” lawmakers on the Senate Energy andNatural Resources Committee said last week.
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The cash market started out this week looking remarkably similarto the way it did last week, but on a reduced scale. Because pricesweren’t digging out from nearly as deep a weekend hole as the oneof Dec. 5-7, Monday’s increases weren’t quite as spectacular asthose from the previous week but were still significantnonetheless.
Three of the four leading natural gas trade associations onFriday were said to be either definitely on board or “favorablyinclined” to jointly ask FERC for a second extension of thedeadline for industry comments on the major notice of proposedrulemaking (NOPR) and notice of inquiry (NOI) that were issued inJuly [RM98-10, RM98-12]. A source indicated there was a “50-50chance” that the lone association holdout would sign on too.
Grass Roots Energy Co., a buyer’s agent for Georgia’sresidential energy consumers looking to switch from Atlanta GasLight Company (AGL), selected Shell Energy Services as the bestvalue in the market, the two companies announced Friday. Shellgained access to the 35,000 Grass Roots customers by beating out 18other marketers competing in the newly deregulated market. Clientswho signed up with Grass Roots by Nov. 4 will start new gas servicewith Shell Dec.1.
Grass Roots Energy Company, a buyer’s agent for Georgia’sresidential energy consumers looking to switch from Atlanta GasLight Company (AGL), selected Shell Energy Services as the bestvalue in the market, the two companies announced Friday. Shellgained access to the 35,000 Grass Roots customers by beating out 18other marketers competing in the newly deregulated market. Clientswho signed up with Grass Roots by Nov. 4 will start new gas servicewith Shell Dec. 1, 1998.
Venture capitalist Oliver Curme is looking for big things fromAltra Energy Technologies. Last year the company in which he’s apartner, Battery Ventures, bought a majority stake in Altra, whichoffers real-time electronic trading of energy. “I put $10 millionof my company’s money into Altra Energy Technologies,” he toldattendees at Zeus Development’s Interactive Energy conference inHouston earlier this week. “I believe, like many of you do, thatthere’s a gold mine to be made in interactive energy, and I put mymoney where my mouth is. In fact, my neck is really stretched onaccount of my belief to the tune of $10 million. But Altra’s areally great company. I’m pretty sure it’s going to be a winner.”
The recent price spikes and generation outages in the Midwestpower market have opened the door wide for the natural gas industryto capture a greater share of the industrial energy market, says asenior economist.
Customers looking for services tailored to their specific needsare driving pipelines to seek lighter-handed regulation includingthe ability to negotiate and deliver those services on the spot-without lengthy FERC proceedings, according to Interstate NaturalGas Assoc. (INGAA) chairman John Riordan.
Looking ahead to what might be the defining issues for his nextterm if his renomination is approved by the Senate, CommissionerWilliam L. Massey focused on FERC’s pipeline certification process,its offshore policy, the issues contained in the gas policy optionspaper – which so far have not been made public – and on ISOs on theelectric side. He said the Commission probably will act on the gaspolicy options paper with a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking withinthe next few weeks.
Carolina Power & Light intends to either acquire a naturalgas supply or marketing company or strike a “strategic alliance”with one in a plan to offer customers “one-stop shopping” for theirmajor energy needs.