By ISIS ALMEIDA and RACHEL MORISON
Gas usage in the UK, Europe
s biggest market for
the fuel, will fall 7.7% from a year earlier in the six-month
summer season, partly because of lower storage demand,
according to National Grid.
Demand will decline to 32.3 billion cubic meters from April
through September, the network manager said Tuesday in its
Summer 2014 Outlook. Thats down from 35
billion in the same period a year earlier, revised to 33.5
billion on a weather-adjusted basis.
Gas injections will drop 42% to 3.1 billion, the grid said,
after the mildest winter in seven years left inventories at
higher-than-usual levels for the time of year.
Overall demand for net storage injection over summer
2014 is expected to be much lower, National Grid said.
Demand throughout winter 2013-14 has been low and there
has been comparatively little use of storage.
UK gas fell 25% since Oct. 1, the start of the winter heating
season, as the six months through March were the hottest for
the period since 2007 and the second warmest since 1981,
according to forecaster MDA Weather Services. Storage was at
54% of capacity yesterday compared with 3.1% last year,
according to data from Gas Infrastructure Europe
. Inventories in Europe were
at 46% of capacity from 21% a year earlier, the data showed.
Minimum gas demand in the UK will probably be 85 million
cubic meters for a mid-summer day and rise to as much as 350
million cubic meters for a cold April day, National Grid
estimates. In 2013, the lowest demand during the summer
period was 93 million cubic meters and the highest was 348
million cubic meters.
Colder conditions are essentially restricted to April,
May and, to a lesser extent, September, the grid said.
Only in these months are the weather sensitive gas
demands noticeably influenced by the weather.
UK gas exports will drop 23% to 2 billion cubic meters in the
period due to lower demand for storage in continental Europe
and fewer cargoes of liquefied natural gas (LNG) arriving in
the country, according to the report. LNG supplies are
forecast at 4 billion cubic meters compared with 6 billion a
year earlier, the grid forecasts.
We anticipate potentially more Asian LNG demand with no
material change to nuclear power plant re-opening in Japan,
hence LNG flows to the UK and Europe
may continue to be
low, the grid said in the report. European LNG
demands are expected to decrease in 2014.
Gas use for power will rise by 1 billion cubic meters to 8.7
billion due to the closing of a coal plant, the grid said.
Electricity demand has been falling since 2006 and is likely
to keep dropping, it said. Peak weather-corrected demand will
be 39.5 gigawatts, the lowest since at least 2011. Power
plants typically undergo maintenance
in the spring and
summer as warmer weather cuts consumption.
Power-generating capacity will be adequate at 76.4 gigawatts,
1.5 gigawatts lower than in winter, the grid forecast. The UK
will rely on 29.1 gigawatts of gas-fed power plants, some of
which may be at risk of being mothballed during the period,
according to the report. National Grid predicts that 25% of
UK power plants will close by 2020.