What a difference a cool front makes

Less than a month ago much of the eastern United States was sweating through a heat wave and New York, New England and the Mid-Atlantic cited spot power prices in excess of $136/MWh.

But the Energy Information Administration (EIA) price data released Aug. 14 paints a far different picture now.

Of EIA’s 10 reporting regions, Southern California reported the highest spot power price in the nation at only $44.59/MWh for delivery Aug. 14. The Midwest had the nation’s lowest power price at $28.31.

The Los Angeles forecast called for a high of 86 degrees and the Chicago forecast predicted a high of only 68 degrees.

“A cold front moving down from Canada will bring cooler, fall-like air to much of the eastern U.S. on Wednesday [Aug. 14], with high temperatures only reaching the 70s for many locations,” according to the National Weather Service web site. “This cooler airmass will also be much drier than normal, making it feel much more like fall, rather than the middle of August. Meanwhile, the front will bring widespread showers and thunderstorms across the Southeast.”

These fall-like conditions translate into less demand for air conditioning and, as a result, weaker spot power prices in many areas.

For more EIA price data, visit: http://www.eia.gov/todayinenergy/prices.cfm

About Wayne Barber 4201 Articles
Wayne Barber, Chief Analyst for the GenerationHub, has been covering power generation, energy and natural resources issues at national publications for more than 20 years. Prior to joining PennWell he was editor of Generation Markets Week at SNL Financial for nine years. He has also worked as a business journalist at both McGraw-Hill and Financial Times Energy. Wayne also worked as a newspaper reporter for several years. During his career has visited nuclear reactors and coal mines as well as coal and natural gas power plants. Wayne can be reached at wayneb@pennwell.com.