If predictions hold, the Northeast may not have to hibernate through bone-chilling cold like it did last winter.
The latest forecast from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shows temperatures are expected to be warmer than last year, when a deep freeze forced people to crank up the heat, drew down natural gas storage inventories and caused prices to spike.
Of course, predicting the weather is a tricky business.
Even so, while natural gas demand spiked last year, overall demand for the commodity this winter is not likely to take a hit, analysts said.
Coal and nuclear plant retirements
“Last winter was rare,” said Gabe Harris, senior analyst of North American gas for Wood Mackenzie. “There is a 97 percent chance that it will not be as cold this year.”
Several nuclear and coal plants have retired since last winter, which could mean about 1 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d) of extra natural gas demand, Mr. Harris noted.
Read more: http://bakken.com/news/id/223224/warmer-winter-likely-hit-natural-gas-demand/