Wednesday, January 09, 2008
New data shows power generation is relying more heavily on natural gas and continues to move away from fuel oil
DENVER (January 9, 2008) - BENTEK Energy, LLC, announced today that natural gas deliveries to dual-fired power plants increased by an average of 31% per day when comparing 2007 to 2006. This equates to an additional 0.5 Bcf/d (billion cubic feet per day) of gas consumption by these switchable power plants. When comparing 2007 to 2005, natural gas use at these plants increased by an average of 52% per day.
"Natural gas prices have been at a discount to fuel oil for much of 2007. This leaves natural gas as the low-cost fuel alternative when compared to increasing petroleum prices," said Jack Weixel, Senior Analyst at BENTEK Energy.
BENTEK Energy estimates that total natural gas burn at U.S. power plants was up 2.1 Bcf/d in 2007, an increase of 13%, when compared to 2006. The 0.5 Bcf/d of fuel used in switchable generation capacity was nearly 25% of the overall increase. The sample used by BENTEK Energy to analyze natural gas burn in the power generation sector includes over 460 natural gas fired power plants, of which 112 are dual-fired facilities. These dual-fired facilities generate approximately 94 GW (gigawatts) of base-load capacity which represents approximately 8% of total power production in the United States.
A daily report from BENTEK Energy, the U.S. Power - Gas Burn Report™, provides a continuing assessment of natural gas use at U.S. Power Plants. To request a trial copy of BENTEK's U.S. Power - Gas Burn Report™, click here.