Thursday, November 5, 2009

Storage up 29 Bcf

I was a little disappointed to see that natural gas in storage increased 29 Bcf, or 0.8%, last week to 3.788 Tcf. It is a very average injection - both the differentials over last year and the five year average remained virtually unchanged, so it is in line with previous injections - but I was hoping for a lower number. Nearly all of the new gas in storage, 27 of 29 Bcf, ended up in the eastern consuming region.

Two pertinent observations from EIA:

1. Temperatures last week were 2.9 degrees above the normal temperatures for the week, and judging by the map below they were warmer in the more populated areas, so there was not much gas in demand for heating. Last week's temperatures were also 4.3 degrees warmer than that last year's.

2. The storage of 514 Bcf in the west region has now exceeded its estimated peak working gas capacity of 509 Bcf for the second week in a row. The figure noted above is a theoretical figure and is lower than the actual design capacity, which also theoretical. Here is a link to the 2009 revised EIA gas storage capacity estimate.

Since last week marked the end of the storage season (plus or minus a couple of weeks), I hope to see that storage number drop next week. Of course that is fact-free speculation and given the mild weather forecasts I have seen this week, it is no better than wishful thinking.


Bill Mendenhall said...

The important good news here is that the net injection of 29 Bcf is finally down to the 5-year average. That's a very good sign compared to the injection rates so far this year.

Robert Hutchinson said...

True, Bill. I was mostly encouraged by the previous week's 26 Bcf injection. I was hoping (without any factual basis, mind you) to get that number below 15 Bcf. But it was a warmer than usual week, so there was no chance of that. I'm going to update the post with a few new factoids.