Nov. 7, 2002 — Electricity prices are generally falling across the U.S., with rain bolstering hydro resources and lower gas prices resulting in cheaper power, the Energy Information Administration reported Thursday.
In its report, “Selected Wholesale Electricity Prices,” EIA said electricity prices in the Western U.S. decreased generally over the past three trading days as rain increased the resources available for hydroelectric generation and warmer weather caused a reduction in customer demand.
Less expensive natural gas also lowered the cost of running power plants in the region. At Mid-Columbia, a benchmark for the U.S. Northwest, prices decreased $9.03 per megawatthour between November 1 and November 6. At COB, prices fell $7.92 per megawatthour during the same time period.
In the Midwest, electricity prices were mixed over the past few days. Cold temperatures coupled with a reduction in supply pushed prices upward on November 5, but prices dropped on November 6 with forecasts for warmer weather and a projected decrease in customer demand. In addition, more nuclear capability came on-line on November 6 that helped to reduce prices in the region.
Prices at the Cinergy trading center, which are reflective of Midwest prices, increased $2.67 per megawatthour from November 4 to November 5, but decreased $1.50 per megawatthour from November 5 to November 6.
In the Southeast, electricity prices followed the Midwest’s pattern of change. Within SERC, prices increased almost $1.60 on November 5, but decreased by nearly the same amount on November 6.
In New York City, spot electricity prices increased because transmission line repairs restricted electricity imports. Prices increased by $4.50 per megawatthour to $62.00 per megawatthour for both November 5 and November 6. For PJM West and in New England, prices were slowly decreasing as warmer forecasts were predicted, which would indicate lower customer demand.
Over the past seven days, the average price at all trading centers ranged between $38.29 and $45.90 per megawatthour.