Physical natural gas cash points rose virtually across the board in Tuesday’s trading for Wednesday delivery. The overall rise was a dime on average, but if super-size gains on pipes such as Algonquin, Iroquois and portions of Tennessee in the Northeast are excluded, the average national gain still came in at 8 cents.
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The Marcellus Shale Coalition (MSC) announced this week that Chesapeake Energy Corp. vice president of government affairs Dave Spigelmyer has been re-elected as the organization’s chair. Randy Albert (COO, Gas Operations, CONSOL Energy), Scott Roy (vice president, Government and Regulatory Affairs, Range Resources Corp.) and John Mollenkopf (senior vice president and COO, MarkWest Energy Partners) were re-elected as vice chair, treasurer and secretary, respectively. The 2013 executive board members are: Dave Cannon, deputy general counsel, Government and Environmental Affairs, EQT Corp.; Jeff Kupfer, senior advisor, Policy and Government Affairs, Chevron; Heather Lamparter, vice president, Legal, EXCO Resources (PA), LLC; Craig Mayer, general counsel, Pennsylvania General Energy; Gary Smith, vice president and general manager, EOG Resources; and Jack Williams, president, XTO Energy. John Bonn, president of NiSource Midstream Services, NiSource Gas Transmission & Storage, and Terry Bossert, senior vice president, Environment & Regulatory Affairs, Chief Oil & Gas, were elected by their peers to serve as at-large members of the Executive Board. Formed three years ago as an organization tasked with addressing issues regarding the production of natural gas from the Marcellus and Utica Shale plays, the MSC has grown to a diverse, member-driven organization representing virtually every business segment along the robust shale supply chain in the region.
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has approved the requests of ANR Pipeline, Trunkline Gas Co. and Southern Natural Gas Co. LLC [CP11-543, CP12-5, CP12-4, respectively] to abandon by sale all or virtually all of their pipeline facilities in the Gulf of Mexico. FERC gave ANR the green light to abandon by sale to subsidiary TC Offshore LLC about 600 miles of pipeline and associated facilities onshore; Southern Natural Gas to abandon to High Point Gas Transmission LLC 604 miles of pipe facilities offshore and onshore; and Trunkline to abandon to affiliate Sea Robin Pipeline Co. LLC about 533 miles of pipeline and most of its offshore interests. Several producers, including Apache Corp., LLOG Exploration Co. LLC, Indicated Shippers, W&T Offshore, McMoRan Exploration Co. and the Producer Coalition protested ANR’s abandonment proposal, calling it an inappropriate attempt to charge higher rates without having to file a Section 4 rate case under the Natural Gas Act.
Physical natural gas prices at virtually all points suffered an average 6-cent drubbing as weekend temperatures were expected to be on the mild side. Only a handful of points posted gains. Southern California was hit with double-digit declines as a temporary outage at a nuclear plant was expected to be resolved. Futures rallied on weekend short-covering, and traders see further buying should prices settle about another 10 cents higher. June futures rose 6 cents to $2.186, and July gained 5.7 cents to $2.299. June crude oil rose 38 cents to $104.93/bbl.
The cash market slumped another five cents on average Friday with virtually all locations posting losses and Northeast locations suffering the greatest setbacks as hyper-warmth was forecast to return to the area on Monday. California points also weakened. Futures held relatively steady and at the close May had eased two-tenths of a cent to $1.989 and June had fallen eight-tenths of a cent to $2.084. May crude oil dropped 81 cents to $102.83/bbl.
U.S. resource plays that are spewing out natural gas and oil have virtually cleared producer calendars of speculative drilling and made for an energy supply bounty that is becoming the envy of numerous companies around the world, speakers at a Houston energy conference said.
Kinder Morgan Inc. (KMI) pipelines have virtually no exposure to low natural gas prices, but they are subject to shifting continental gas flows, particularly those resulting from developing shale gas supply basins.
Virtually all points fell Thursday as they succumbed to a triple whammy of bearish threats: further increases in storage inventories, futures weakness and mild weather for mid-winter that refuses to go away and allow normal cold conditions to take hold.
Virtually all of the cash market was down Friday as modest rebounds of high temperatures and a prior-day 4-cent decline by October futures proved unable to support continued firmness. The usual weekend drop of industrial load applied further downward pressure on cash numbers.