U.S. Sets New Two-Day Record for Natural Gas Delivery
Washington, D.C. – 151.7 billion cubic feet (Bcf) of natural gas was delivered in the United States on February 14, 2021 and 149.8 Bcf was delivered on February 15 making Sunday the second-highest delivery day ever and setting a record for the largest demand for a two-day period. Parts of the United States saw extreme cold and there were sufficient natural gas supply and delivery capacity for space heating, hot water, cooking, manufacturing, electricity generation and our export agreements with foreign allies.
“Natural gas companies are able to reliably deliver for their customers even in the most challenging circumstances due to thorough preparation and a dependable and resilient delivery system, the importance of which comes into clear focus during extreme weather events like we are seeing right now in many parts of the country,” said American Gas Association President and CEO Karen Harbert.
On February 14, 69.8 Bcf of natural gas flowed to the residential and commercial sector and 27.8 Bcf was used in the industrial sector. 37.7 Bcf of natural gas was used to generate electricity and 12.6 Bcf was exported, either by pipeline to Mexico or transported as liquified natural gas by ship. On February 15, 68.9 Bcf of natural gas flowed to residential and commercial sector, 27.5 Bcf to industrial, 39.7 Bcf to power generation and 9.8 Bcf was exported.
While natural gas utilities faced some unprecedented challenges and spot prices climbed in some regions due to spikes in demand, families and businesses that use natural gas were protected from higher prices by the careful planning of their utilities. Natural gas utilities use multiple long-term contracts that seek to guarantee enough supply to meet demand and to lock-in affordable prices. Utilities also buy natural gas in the summer when it is more affordable and store it to deliver on the coldest days. Thirty-eight percent of the natural gas delivered on February 15 came from storage.
The previous two-day record was set on January 30 and January 31, 2019 when 155 Bcf and 141 Bcf was delivered or exported. Since then, natural gas utilities have added approximately 1.25 million residential customers and 50,000 businesses.
“We can deliver affordable energy 24/7/365, maintain resilience and achieve decarbonization with natural gas,” Harbert continued.
Last month, the American Gas Foundation (AGF) released a new study that demonstrates how the resilience of our current energy system is largely derived from the gas system’s ability to quickly respond to events and use its extensive storage resources for long durations and peak seasonal demand. The study, Building a Resilient Energy Future: How the Gas System Contributes to US Energy System Resilience, explains why utilities, system operators, regulators, and policymakers need to recognize that a diverse supply of energy assets, including natural gas, is critical to achieving a resilient, prosperous and cleaner energy future.