Monday, December 12, 2016

ERCOT Fuel Mix November 2016: Gas and Coal Fighting It Out

ERCOT released the November Demand and Energy Report today, which shows gas ceding more market share to coal, during a month of near average total load.

Load was up about 2% from last November, averaging 34 GW:

Meanwhile gas-fired output fell 16.5% from 14.89 GW to 12.44 GW:

Comparing the past 4 Novembers, part of the decline in gas fired power can be attributed to high nuclear and wind output relative to prior years.  Nuclear was up due to higher capacity factors at both nuclear complexes, and wind was up due to increased capacity, despite a lower capacity factor for wind in November.

Subtracting renewables and nuclear, the remaining market share is battled over by gas and coal, and November is of the lowest demand months for that remainder.  This November there was just 5.6 BCF-equivalent power generation demand for carbon-based fuel, which was the lowest in the past 5 years.

Natural gas regained a bit of market share from coal this month in the ERCOT region, but it was still well below November 2015, and has been declining all year as gas prices have escalated.