Natural Gas World - No Relief Yet for Vortex-Ravaged Southern U.S.

February 17, 2021 – Natural Gas World

No Relief Yet for Vortex-Ravaged Southern U.S.

By Dale Lunan

The weather event has led to a sharp spike in energy costs: cash prices for natural gas across trading hubs in the Midcontinent region reached or exceeded $1,000/mn Btu, according to trade media reports, while next-day power prices in Houston approached $1,500/MWh on February 16.

Texas governor Greg Abbott declared a state of emergency on February 12, ahead of Uri’s arrival, and on February 15 he ordered Freeport LNG to turn down operations to reduce strain on the Texas power grid. Train 1 was already offline; now, Trains 2 and 3 have been taken down, according to Houston-based RBN Energy.

At the same time, other Gulf Coast LNG operators have been impacted, RBN Energy gas analyst Sheetal Nasta wrote in a February 16 blog. Cheniere Energy’s Corpus Christi liquefaction terminal has cut feed gas intake to 400mn ft3/day, with expectations of further reductions, while a feed gas pipeline force majeure and marine traffic disruptions have cut feed gas to its Sabine Pass complex to 1.3bn ft3/day.

And on Monday, Cameron LNG lost power due to an issue with the transmission grid, but by Wednesday, power had been restored.

All-in, Nasta told NGW on February 17, US LNG feed gas deliveries were down to just under 2bn ft3/day as of February 16, compared to an average of nearly 10bn ft3/day over the past 30 days.

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