Electricity prices on the rise in southwest, mid-continent regions

Oct. 11, 2002 — Weather changes combined with rising natural gas prices led to higher electricity prices in the Southwest and mid-continent regions, Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported Thursday.

Western U.S. electricity prices were mixed for the past seven trading days. In the Southwest region, prices at the Four Corners trading center increased four consecutive trading days as warmer weather increased electricity demand coupled with increased natural gas prices.

On the other hand, California’s prices were relatively stable despite rising natural gas prices, as moderate weather lowered the demand for electricity. At the NP-15, California’s northern transmission grid, prices ranged between $32.44 and $36.39 per megawatthour. Similarly, prices at the SP-15, California’s southern transmission grid, prices ranged between $32.38 and $36.42 per megawatthour.

In the Pacific Northwest, increased hydroelectric generation kept electricity prices stable for the past seven trading days, despite warmer than average temperatures. Prices at the Mid-Columbia trading center, the benchmark for northwestern prices, ranged between $26.41 and $28.84 per megawatthour.

Electricity prices in the Mid-continent region increased yesterday (October 9) for the first time in six trading days as higher natural gas prices increased fuel costs at some power plants. Prices at the Cinergy Hub increased 6 percent to $23.80 per megawatthour.

In the Southeastern U.S., prices dropped (four consecutive trading days), as electricity demand remained low with moderate weather. Prices at the SERC decreased 34 percent from a high of $44.39 per megawatthour on October 3 to $29.36 per megawatthour on October 9.

Prices in the Northeast were mixed over the last seven trading days, although prices were relatively stable the last three trading days. Prices at NEPOOL ranged between $46.67 and $54.96 per megawatthour.

At the PJM West, prices ranged between $27.94 and $55.96 per megawatthour and in New York City, prices ranged between $51.00 and $61.88 per megawatthour.

Over the past seven days, the average price at all trading centers ranged between $34.79 and $39.52 per megawatthour.

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The Clarion Energy Content Team is made up of editors from various publications, including POWERGRID International, Power Engineering, Renewable Energy World, Hydro Review, Smart Energy International, and Power Engineering International. Contact the content lead for this publication at Jennifer.Runyon@ClarionEvents.com.

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