February 2016, Vol. 243, No. 2

Features

Natural Gas Use for Power Generation Higher this Winter

So far this winter, natural gas consumption in the electric power sector (gas burn) has been higher than in any previous winter. According to Bentek Energy, gas burn in the electric power sector has averaged 25 Bcf/d so far this winter (Nov. 1-Feb. 8), up 17% from last year’s average of 21.4 Bcf/d during the same period and significantly higher than the 18.8 Bcf/d average of the past five years. Low natural gas prices have been the primary driver of increasing natural gas use for power generation, although reductions in coal capacity and the availability of efficient gas-fired generating units have also played a role. On an annual average basis, the electric power sector is the large

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