Joining a number of other forecasters, Andover, MA-based WSI Corp. said Monday that it expects the summer will bring sizzling asphalt and ice cream trucks to a majority of the U.S. The company said it looks for the July-September period to average warmer-than-normal temps in most locations, with the exception of the northern and central Plains, which will experience cooler than normal weather.

“We continue to expect a warm late summer period in most of the major population centers in the East, along with another hot summer in the West,” according to WSI seasonal forecaster Dr. Todd Crawford. “We now think most of the northern and central Plains will remain relatively cool [during] this period, however.”

The company’s July forecast looks for warmer than normal temperatures in a majority of the country, with especially warm temps in Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia. The north central region of the country and Oklahoma and Kansas are expected to register cooler than normal temperatures during the month.

WSI said it believes that the warm month predictions “could prove to be bullish for gas prices as summer demand could slow the pace of injections to inventory.” As a result, higher natural gas prices “will translate into higher power prices in most areas as higher loads increase the operating factors of both gas-fired CCGTs and peakers.”

WSI’s August forecast calls for more of the same, with warmer than normal temps in the East and West, with especially hot readings in a number of states within those regions. Cooler than normal temperatures are forecast for the north central and south central regions, except for North Dakota and Texas.

“The continuance of the warmer-than-normal forecast into August increases the likelihood of generator failures that would have bullish impacts on power prices,” WSI said. “The cooler-than-normal forecasts in much of the central U.S. may dampen the increased demand seen for natural gas in other regions.

Those looking for a break from the heat will have to look beyond September according to WSI. The company said it expects the U.S. to be warmer than normal during the month except for in the north central region and Oklahoma and Kansas, which will be cooler than normal.

“As the warmer-than-normal outlook extends into September, the natural gas injections to storage will be watched closely,” WSI said. “Warmer-than-normal weather in September could mean continued summer like demand for both gas and power. This would be bullish for prices in September and would increase winter supply concerns due to increased uncertainty of meeting [natural gas] inventory targets.”

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