17 April 2007 22:26 [Source: ICIS news]
By Brian McIntyre
HOUSTON (ICIS news)--Market conditions will allow the US to restock natural gas inventories before the 2007-2008 winter heating season despite a new forecast for continued strong natural gas prices, industry sources said on Tuesday.
The Energy Information Administration (EIA) forecast that prices will average $7.83/m cubic feet (mcf) in 2007, 89 cents higher than the 2006, sources said.
The EIA said increased supply in the form of higher domestic production and a larger volume of liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports were expected to offset higher demand in 2007.
According to the EIA’s Short-Term Energy Outlook, which was released on 10 April, ?xml:namespace>
2007 LNG imports were projected to add 750bn cubic feet (bcf) to supplies, an increase of 170 bcf (47%) from 2006 imports.
The agency anticipates natural gas demand will rise by 540 bcf (2.5%) versus 2006 levels. Colder-than normal weather conditions during the first quarter was given as the leading reason for the higher demand.
Inventories were expected to remain above the five-year average level through this year and the next, according to the EIA report.
The leading factors that would prohibit filling inventories would be higher summer demand due to above normal temperatures through the season and destructive hurricanes to the
Natural Gas Storage Inventories (source: EIA)?xml:namespace>
| || |
3,611 bcf* (projected)
1,695 bcf **
3,461 bcf ***
*Assumes 5-year average injection rate of 77.4 bcf/week
**Record minimum storage volume
***Record peak storage volume
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