Best in Energy – 9 August 2022

U.K. household gas and electricity bills set to surge

German economy set to lose $265 billion from war

Goldman reiterates forecast for even higher oil prices

Long-term energy storage using thermal systems

U.S. reconciliation bill tax and spending implications¹

¹ The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) prepares a “scorecard” for all proposed legislation examining the implications for government revenues and spending. The linked document is the scorecard for the “Inflation Reduction Act of 2022” approved by the Senate on a party-line 51-50 vote on August 7. Full details of the contents of the bill and its passage through the legislature are available from the bill tracking system maintained by the non-partisan Congressional Research Service.

SOUTH CHINA’s precipitation has tapered off after an unusually heavy start to the rainy season, which brought flooding earlier than usual. Total precipitation at Yibin/Xiangjiaba on the Sichuan/Yunnan border has been 800 millimetres since the start of the year, around 7% above the 2014-2021 average, but the surplus has been shrinking in recent weeks. Reduced rainfall is likely to limit hydropower production later in the year and increase reliance on coal-fired generators:

IF YOU would like to receive best in energy and my research notes every day, you can add your email to the circulation list here: https://eepurl.com/dxTcl1

Best in Energy – 3 August 2022

G7 statement reaffirms exploration of Russia oil-price cap

France plans to fill gas storage completely by end of October

France cuts nuclear output as heatwave warms rivers ($BBG)

Rhine water levels close to forcing transport closure ($BBG)

U.S. retailers seek warehouses for excess inventories ($WSJ)

Global refinery capacity expansions

RIVER RHINE water levels at Kaub had dropped to just 61 centimetres on August 2, the lowest since December 2018, and the lowest for the time of year for more than 25 years, as prolonged drought causes river levels to fall across Northwest Europe, threatening power generation and transport of bulk commodities:

CHINA’s hydroelectric power stations generated a record 583 billion kWh in the first six months of the year, an increase of +100 billion kWh or more than +20% compared with the same period in 2021. China’s hydro generation was more than three times the entire electrical output of the United Kingdom:

CHINA’s thermal power generation, nearly all of it from coal, dipped to 2,728 billion kWh in January-June, a decrease of 98 billion kWh (-4%) compared with the same period in 2021, helping improve the coal inventory situation:

IF YOU would like to receive best in energy plus my research notes every day, you can add your email to the circulation list here: https://eepurl.com/dxTcl1

Best in Energy – 13 July 2022

Baltic grids prepare to synchronise to EU rapidly

OPEC predicts oil consumption to rise in 2023

Russia’s fuel exports to Middle East surge ($BBG)

China hydropower generation hits record high

U.S. homes with electric-only energy systems

China hesitates to mandate vaccination ($BBG)

Rapid inflation and its many discontents ($FT)

BRENT’s calendar spread from December 2022 to December 2023 has softened to a backwardation of $8 per barrel from $16 in early June as traders anticipate a cyclical economic slowdown will relieve some of the shortage in oil supply next year:

TEXAS electricity consumption increased at a compound annual rate of +1.5% over the last 20 years, reaching 427 billion kWh in 2021, up from 318 billion kWh in 2001:

U.K. REAL GDP rose by +0.51% in May from April, the fastest increase for four months, with particularly large increases in manufacturing (+0.87%) and construction (+1.54%):

IF YOU would like to receive best in energy plus my research notes every day, you can add your email to the circulation list here: https://eepurl.com/dxTcl1

Best in Energy – 24 June 2022

RWE calls for EU standardised gas rationing plan ($FT)

China’s southern floods and northern heatwave (trans.)

EU/Russia de-escalate dispute over Kaliningrad ($FT)

Russia cancels Kaliningrad grid separation exercise

U.S. energy secretary holds summit with refiners

Freeport LNG’s extended outage and the impact

Pakistan cancels expensive LNG tender ($BBG)

Recession indicators, depth and duration ($BBG)

Investors prepare for imminent recession ($BBG)

U.S. FINANCIAL CONDITIONS are tightening rapidly, nearing levels consistent with the onset of a recession or at least a pronounced mid-cycle slowdown. The Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago’s adjusted financial conditions index, which measures financial pressure, has risen to the highest since the first wave of the pandemic in 2020 and before that 2011. In contrast to those episodes, however, this time the central bank plans to tighten conditions even further to squeeze inflation out of the economy rather than easing them to support growth and employment:

SOUTH CHINA continues to experience torrential rainfall, with cumulative precipitation this year at Xiangjiaba on the Sichuan/Yunnan border almost +60% higher than the seasonal average for 2014-2021, and even heavier rains expected in July and August:

SIGN UP to receive best in energy plus my research notes every day by adding your email to the circulation list here: https://eepurl.com/dxTcl1

Best in Energy – 22 June 2022

U.K. energy supplier failure has cost £2.7bn

India urges refiners to buy Russia oil ($WSJ)

China’s northern heatwave and southern floods

OPEC’s spare capacity decision ($BBG)

Thailand reduces LNG imports ($BBG)

Xilodu hydropower station (trans.)*

Xiangjiaba hydropower station (trans.)*

* The Xilodu (13.9 GW) and Xiangjiaba (7.8 GW) mega-dams on the Jinsha River between the provinces of Sichuan and Yunnan have almost as much combined generation capacity as the much more internationally famous Three Gorges hydropower station (22.5 GW). Hydro generation on the Jinsha plays a critical role in power supply for the southern export manufacturing hub around the Pearl River delta (including Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Hong Kong) as well long-distance power transmission to Shanghai. Southern rainfall and reservoir levels are therefore critical for electricity availability and the region’s demand for coal from the north.

EU28 GAS INVENTORIES increased by an average of +5.6 TWh per day over the seven days ending on June 20, decelerating from more than 7.4 TWh per day in the middle of May. But storage has filled at a record rate this year and the pace of injection was clearly unsustainable; some slowdown in the rate of injection was therefore anticipated. Inventories are +35 TWh (+6% or 0.25 standard deviations) above the ten-year seasonal average. The impact of Russia’s supply reductions to Europe cannot (yet) be identified in the data:

SIGN UP to receive best in energy plus my research notes every day by adding your email to the circulation list here: https://eepurl.com/dxTcl1

Best in Energy – 31 March 2022

White House briefs on 180 million bbl oil release

U.S./IEA oil releases have had limited impact

Sri Lanka runs out of currency to buy fuel

U.K. horticulture hit by surging gas prices

Germany’s industrial base hit by energy crisis

India’s power generation shortages worsen

Euronav tanker firm suspends Russian business

U.S. hydro output hit by western drought

White House struggles to balance goals ($WSJ)

U.S. PETROLEUM stocks outside the strategic petroleum reserve rose by +2 million bbl to 1,139 million bbl last week. But inventories are -107 million bbl (-9%) below the pre-pandemic five-year seasonal average. Stocks have declined in 65 of the last 91 weeks by a total of -323 million bbl since the start of July 2020:

To receive best in energy plus my research notes via email every day, you can add your email to the circulation list here: https://eepurl.com/dxTcl1