Bloomberg News

U.K. Gas Slides Amid Low Demand, Falling Exports, Record Storage

June 15, 2011

June 15 (Bloomberg) -- U.K. natural gas for July fell as demand slipped and exports to Belgium declined amid higher-than- usual volumes of the fuel in Britain’s biggest storage site.

National Grid Plc forecast gas demand in the 24 hours through 6 a.m. tomorrow at 201 million cubic meters, 46 million less than normal for the season, according to the network manager. The nation’s pipelines will hold 339 million cubic meters at that time, 3 million more than at the start of today. Within-day gas declined 0.95 pence to 58.95 pence. Gas for tomorrow was at 58.75 pence at 4:30 p.m.

Interconnector (U.K.) Ltd.’s pipeline was exporting about 28 million cubic meters a day to Belgium, according to data on the company’s website. That’s 3 million less than yesterday.

Gas for July fell as much as 0.74 pence, or 1.3 percent, to 57.96 pence a therm. It was at 58.5 pence as of 4:39 p.m., according to broker prices compiled by Bloomberg. That’s equal to $9.48 a million British thermal units.

Centrica Plc’s Rough storage site, a depleted field under the North Sea, held 28,764 gigawatt-hours as of 6 p.m. today, according to National Grid data. That’s the most for this point in the year since at least 2004, the data show.

Dimlington Maintenance

BP Plc will reduce gas flows into the Easington-Dimlington terminal in northeast England for eight weeks starting at the end of this month because of planned maintenance.

“This aligns with reduced throughput requirements due to offshore work,” Matt Taylor, an Aberdeen, Scotland-based company spokesman, said by telephone.

BG Group Plc said yesterday it had delayed maintenance at the North Sea CATS riser platform. The platform will halt July 6 to July 17 and July 28 to “approximately” Aug. 3. The work is timed to coincide with maintenance and related work at the Armada platform.

BG will halt Armada for maintenance and the connection of two underwater pipelines for 45 days from June 23. The CATS riser and Armada installations are linked.

Gas deliveries through the CATS pipeline into Teesside in northeast England won’t stop completely during the work, BP said last month. BP operates the CATS pipeline, while BG is the so- called duty holder of the riser platform.

U.K. baseload power for next month fell 25 pence to 51.10 pounds a megawatt-hour. About half of Britain’s power can come from gas, so the fuel’s costs influence power prices. Baseload is delivered around the clock.

Gas for the coming winter lost 0.6 pence to 72.9 pence a therm. U.K. winter baseload power slipped 30 pence to 59.80 pounds a megawatt-hour.

--Editors: Rob Verdonck, Randall Hackley

To contact the reporter on this story: Ben Farey in London at;

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephen Voss at

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