WASHINGTON (Sputnik) – Inventories of stored natural gas at the onset of winter in the United States have fallen to the lowest level in 13 years, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported in a press release.
“EIA forecasts that natural gas inventories will reach 3,263 billion cubic feet (Bcf) at the end of October … the lowest end-of-October level for US natural gas inventories since 2005,” the release said.
A primary reason was lingering cold in April 2018, the coldest April in the past 21 years, which delayed the start of the natural gas storage refill season by about four weeks, the release said.
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Nevertheless, EIA projected that spot natural gas prices will remain virtually identical to 2017, due to increases in US domestic production of natural gas and a buildout of infrastructure to deliver gas to consumers.
In 2017, the United States had to import gas from abroad due to the fact that the country’s infrastructure failed to satisfy the demand for gas in severe winter conditions. In particular, the country has received two LNG shipments from the Yamal LNG plant of Russia’s Novatek gas producer.