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Higher power demand drives increase in weekly US gas use


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Higher power demand drives increase in weekly US gas use

Consumption of natural gas in the U.S. inched up by 2% during the week that ended May 29, mainly due to a 12% increase in natural gas used for power generation, the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported in its May 30 "Natural Gas Weekly Update."

U.S. gas demand for the report week totaled 62.2 Bcf/d, compared with 60.7 Bcf/d in the previous week, according to the EIA. Consumption for power generation jumped week over week to 29.9 Bcf/d from 26.7 Bcf/d, as a result of increased demand for cooling.

However, gas use from the residential and commercial sector dropped to 11.2 Bcf/d from 12.4 Bcf/d. Consumption of the industrial sector also dipped to 21.1 Bcf/d from 21.5 Bcf/d.

Total U.S. demand — including Mexico exports, pipeline fuel use or losses, and LNG pipeline receipts — stood at 78.8 Bcf/d, an increase from 76.9 Bcf/d in the previous week.

Eleven LNG tankers carrying a total of 41.4 Bcf left the U.S. from May 23 to May 29, the EIA reported, citing shipping data compiled by Bloomberg. The number of vessels that departed stayed flat week over week. Seven tankers came from the Cheniere Energy Inc.-operated Sabine Pass terminal in Louisiana, while two departed the company's Corpus Christi terminal in Texas. The remaining two vessels left from Dominion Energy Inc.'s Cove Point terminal in Maryland.

Recently, Freeport LNG Development LP received federal authorization to export LNG from the fourth liquefaction train at its LNG export facility on Quintana Island in Texas to countries without a free trade agreement with the U.S. Operations at train 4 are scheduled to begin in 2023.

Train 1 at the facility is expected to start commercial exports in the third quarter, while trains 2 and 3 are scheduled to be placed in service in the first quarter and second quarter of 2020, respectively.

U.S. gas supply for the report week was 94.5 Bcf/d, higher than 93.6 Bcf/d a week ago. Average net imports from Canada remained flat week over week at 4.9 Bcf/d. Dry gas production edged up to 89.5 Bcf/d from 88.6 Bcf/d, with marketed production climbing to 100.4 Bcf/d from 99.3 Bcf/d.

Net injections into storage for the week ended May 24 came in at 114 Bcf, an increase from the five-year average of 97 Bcf and the 95 Bcf recorded during the same week in 2018. Working gas stocks were 1,867 Bcf, 257 Bcf lower than the five-year average, but 156 Bcf higher than the same week a year earlier.