Lower 48 gas storage

Published at 20:18 20 Aug 2019 by . Last edited 11:18 22 Aug 2019.

Thursday’s EIA report (week ended 16 Aug) – EA Final Estimate: +60 bcf

  • We forecast that Thursday’s EIA report will show 60 bcf was sent into storage last week. A 5% drop in national population-weighted CDDs led to a 1.3 bcf/d decline in power burn. Slumping LNG feedgas demand (-0.3 bcf/d w/w) also weighed on total demand, as both Cameron and Freeport saw lower w/w flows amid start-up teething pains.
  • Total supply was flat w/w at 95.4 bcf/d as a 0.2 bcf/d w/w rise in Lower 48 production (made up of 0.1 bcf/d w/w growth in both the Rockies and the Gulf of Mexico) was offset by a drop of around 0.2 bcf/d in imports from Canada amid mild Northeast temperatures.

Next Thursday’s report (week ending 23 Aug) – EA Estimate: +54 bcf

  • We project that the current week will yield an injection of 54 bcf. We base this on weather forecasts that pop-weighted CDDs will rise by 20% w/w, lifting power burn by 1.2 bcf/d w/w.
  • Total Lower 48 production is on track to grow by 0.4 bcf/d w/w. We see the Gulf of Mexico logging w/w output growth of 0.2 bcf/d (equalling the region’s weekly 2019 high of 3.3 bcf/d) and Appalachia and the Rockies combining to produce 0.2 bcf/d more w/w.
  • We project Permian output will be flat w/w. Commissioning activity on Gulf Coast Express (GCX) has accelerated in recent days in advance of full-service on the pipe, scheduled for late September. Readings from other pipelines that connect to GCX imply the project is currently taking 0.25 bcf/d in initial flows. The gains associated with GCX will be offset by maintenance elsewhere in the Permian, however. Takeaway capacity north from the basin will be limited by up to 0.5 bcf/d from 20–24 August due to work on NGPL’s Amarillo line in Mills County, Iowa.
  • We project LNG feedgas flows will rise by 0.6 bcf/d w/w. Flows returned to Corpus Christi T2 on 14 August, so that facility alone will take 0.3 bcf/d more w/w. Corpus Christi hit 1.0 bcf/d on 19 August for the first time since 2 August (when T2 went offline for final checks before commercial start-up). Sabine Pass feedgas demand is also on track to grow, by 0.4 bcf/d w/w, after upgrades to the Gillis compressor station were completed on 14 August. Those works had stymied up to 0.5 bcf/d in flows to Sabine via the Creole Trail Pipeline.
  • Flows to Freeport will be flat w/w at 50 mmcf/d. The tanker LNG Jurojin has been floating offshore since 16 August to load the terminal’s first cargo, but a flange gasket rupture at the facility that same day means that the loading has been delayed while repairs are completed.
Fig 1: Regional flows and fundamentals model, bcf
Source: Energy Aspects
Fig 2: Balance forecasts, bcf/d
Source: Energy Aspects

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