On December 1, 2015 ERCOT’s Capacity, Demand and Reserves report projected a summer 2016 Reserve margin of 16.5%, with Total Capacity at 79,280 MW and firm peak load at 68,063 MW. Nevertheless, the final summer SARA, which was released on May 3, 2016 estimates total generation resource capacity at 78,434 MW, and firm peak load at 70,588, so summer reserve margin is now projected to be 11.1%. Capacity is lower in the final SARA report because a couple of natural gas-fired Peaker facilities are now expected to be available later in the summer, 416 MW of additional mothballed capacity, and a decrease of 512 MW in planned capacity compared to the amounts reported in previous reports.
While the 2013 summer months were relatively mild by Texas standards, the first week of September produced one surprise. On 9/3/2013, the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), reported a 15 minute interval Real Time price spike, which neared the current $5,000/MWh price cap. The market clearing price at 4:30pm (or 1630) was $4,900/MWH or $4.90/kWh when temperatures and power usage were high. While the $4,900/MW price only lasted one 15 minute interval, the simple average price across all load zones for hour ending 5:00pm was $2,333/MWh, or $2.333/kWh.
If you need timely information on what is happening in the natural gas market you need to read the Acclaim Energy Insider every week. This week his 2 page overview (see link below) focuses on the natural gas maket and ERCOT heat rates. Don't get caught without understanding what may be in store for the days ahead.....
Video Outlook: August 2, 2012
A larger than expected injection of 28Bcf triggered a sharp selloff in the natural gas market. Likewise, a shift in forecasts calling for less intense temperatures contributed to the pullback. The September contract is now trading below $3.00/MMBtu, so such price has now become resistance. We have seen bargain hunting at this level; however, the degree of weather driven demand will dictate the next move.
ENERGY INSIGHTS: JULY 18, 2012
Today above normal temperatures and nuclear outages drove prices close to $3.00/MMBtu. The imbalance between supply and demand continues to tighten, so be sure to contact your Acclaim representative to evaluate your current situation.
Energy Insights: July 3, 2012
NG futures modestly lower today as expectation of excessive heat have eased per the current 11-15 day forecast. Nevertheless, above normal temperatures are expected across most of the continental U.S., so weather will still offer some price support.
Energy Insights: June 14, 2012
Today the NYMEX NG July-2012 contract settled 14% (or $.298/MMbtu) higher and CAL-2013 settled 4.2% (or $.14/MMbtu) higher compared to yesterday’s marks. Prices continued the upward trend in after hours electronic trading. This week we cover how to manage current volatility and avoid getting caught in a short squeeze.
Energy Insights: May 31, 2012
After reaching $2.75/MMBtu on 5/18/2012, price action for the June-2012 contract seesawed up until Thursday 5/24. Since then, NG futures have tumbled almost as fast as they rose. The decline showed that sustained prices above $2.50/MMBtu likely would inspire some switching back to coal.
Energy Insights May 23, 2012
High volatility in NG futures ahead of storage data release. Fresh news will give the market more direction; however, this is becoming a weather driven market again, so prices will swing as conditions change. Regarding the electricity market, on 5/22/2012, ERCOT released a new long-term study which confirmed the potential of electricity shortages within the coming decade as electric use in Texas continues to hit new records.
Energy Insights: May 17, 2012
Natural gas futures have risen sharply from the 10-year lows set last month. This rally has been driven by a combination of an increase in demand (mainly from coal to natural gas switching) and an increase in production cuts.