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    Lower wind generation, cooler weather send gas price in Europe up; Gazprom requests 42.4 mcm for transit via Ukraine


    November 30, 2022 - Interfax Russia & CIS Energy Newswire

     

      MOSCOW. Nov 30 (Interfax) - Wind power generation in Europe has fallen sharply, by as much as half, and spot prices for gas and gas withdrawals from storage facilities have risen as a result.

      Gazprom's (MOEX: GAZP) request for pumping Russian gas through Ukraine has not changed markedly from the previous days and months.

      UKRAINIAN TRANSIT

      The Gas Transport System Operator of Ukraine, or GTSOU, has accepted a booking from Gazprom today to transport 42.4 million cubic meters of gas through the country, data from GTSOU show.

      Capacity was requested only through one of two entry points into Ukraine's Gas Transport System, the Sudzha metering station. A request was not accepted through the Sokhranovka metering station.

      "Gazprom is supplying Russian gas for transit through the territory of Ukraine at the volume confirmed by the Ukraine side via the Sudzha metering station at 42.4 mcm on November 30, with booking via the Sokhranovka metering station declined," Gazprom spokesman Sergei Kupriyanov told reporters.

      GTSOU has declared a force majeure with respect to acceptance of gas for transit through Sokhranovka, claiming that it cannot control the Novopskov compressor station. The route through Sokhranovka had provided transit of more than 30 mcm of gas per day.

      Gazprom believes there are no grounds for the force majeure or obstacles to continuing operations as before.

      EUROPEAN MARKET

      Wind power generation fell below 8% of the European energy mix on Tuesday, from 15% on Monday and an average of 18% for the past week, when it peaked at 22.4%, according to WindEurope data.

      The day-ahead contract for today at the Dutch TTF gas hub in the Netherlands rose 7% in the space of a day to $1,425 per thousand cubic meters. In Asia, the most expensive winter futures contract for February on the JKM Platts index has risen to $1,154.

      The German Federal Network Agency has changed its assessment of the weather situation in the country from "stable" to "tense", according to the Bundesnetzagentur's daily overview of the country's gas supply situation.

      The situation is considered "tense" when the average temperature forecast for the upcoming seven days is zero to two degrees Celsius below the average for 2018-2021, the agency noted. Temperatures this week are forecast to be 0.68°C colder than the average of the past four years, so higher consumption is expected.

      The Bundesnetzagentur assesses the situation with the country's gas supply as tense, and does not rule out further deterioration. The agency encourages consumers to conserve gas. According to the regulator, gas shortages in winter could be avoided foremost when achieving the goal of conserving at least 20%.

      The Nord Stream pipeline has been fully shut down owing to a number of sanctions-related problems regarding equipment maintenance. At the end of September, two lines of Nord Stream 1 and one line of Nord Stream 2 ruptured near the Danish island of Bornholm.

      EUROPEAN INVENTORIES

      Europe has begun withdrawing gas from its UGS facilities intensively, and inventories in storage facilities are currently 93.62%, a figure that is 10.6 percentage points above the five-year average.

      Inventories "thinned" 0.27 percentage points during the gas day on November 28, the most in the withdrawal season so far.

      The beginning of offtake season on November 14 this year was the latest since Gas Infrastructure Europe began monitoring in 2011, with the previous latest date coming on November 4, 2013.

      "The load on UGS facilities in Europe will be higher than in previous years owing to the changed logistics and sources of gas supplies to the European market," Gazprom has cautioned.

      In response to the lower temperatures, European LNG-receiving terminals have boosted regasification volumes, and the capacity-utilization factor has been 68% since the beginning of November and over 70% for almost a week, against an average of 60% in October.

      U.S. INVENTORIES

      The state of gas in UGS facilities in the United States is of increasing importance for the global market, and the country is actively increasing gas exports, primarily to Europe, while production is rising at a slower pace.

      The U.S. has joined Europe in withdrawing gas from its UGS facilities. The latest reporting week ending November 18 saw 2.3 billion cubic meters of gas extracted from UGS facilities, slightly exceeding the usual rates for this time of year.

      The current level of inventory is around 74%, which is just 1% lower than average for the past five years; nevertheless, the figure is substantially lower than inventories at UGS facilities in Europe and in Russia, according to the U.S. Energy Department's Energy Information Administration.

      The EIA currently expects UGS stocks to drop by 60 billion cubic meters this winter to the average for the last five years. Natural gas volumes in storage facilities should total 40 bcm by the end of March, which would be 8% below the average for five years.

      Pr of

      (Our editorial staff can be reached at eng.editors@interfax.ru)

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