By Editors of Power Engineering
Power generators face few major risks during this winter season, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission reported in its 2017-2018 Winter Energy Market Assessment.
Warmer than normal winter temperatures are expected to lead to moderate demands in most markets, and electric capacity is sufficient in all regions based on current load forecasts.
After experiencing a drop in natural gas production over the last year and a half, production is expected to increase this winter and supplies are expected to be well distributed, barring unexpected weather events or operational issues.
Though Henry Hub natural gas prices are averaging 50 cents higher, FERC expects prices to reach the average seen in 2016, if not the low end of 2016 prices.
However, coal use for power generation is expected to remain slightly higher than natural gas use through the winter.