May 17, 2020

Gulf Oil Platforms and Refineries Recover from Isaac

energy digital
Gulf oil
refineries
Isaac
Admin
2 min
Nearly 60% of oil production in the Gulf still offline
In the aftermath of Hurricane Isaac, the Gulf Coast's oil and gas hub is slowly coming back to life as power is restored and floodwaters are clear...

 

In the aftermath of Hurricane Isaac, the Gulf Coast's oil and gas hub is slowly coming back to life as power is restored and floodwaters are cleared out at refineries.

Nearly 60 percent of production, or 800,000 barrels of oil per day, remains offline, according to the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, but around 100,000 barrels per day of production was restored over the weekend. During the thick of the storm, 1.3 million barrels per day of oil was suspended out of the total 19 million barrels of petroleum the country consumes every day.

SEE OTHER TOP STORIES IN THE ENERGY DIGITAL CONTENT NETWORK

Hurricane Isaac to Stir Gulf Oil Spill Remains

Ancient Passive Cooling Designs Provide Insight

Read More in Energy Digital's Hottest Summer Issue

Due to threat Isaac posed to the Gulf, the national average price of oil rose 11 cents last week, leveling off to just under $3.83 per gallon Friday and declining another two cents Monday—the highest price for gasoline on Labor Day in history.

The good news is analysts say prices should go down in the upcoming weeks as refineries ramp back up and an ending summer season drives refineries to switch to cheaper winter blends of gasoline.

Onshore pipelines, ports and terminals have re-opened for the most part, while several natural gas pipelines remain shut. The Energy Department anticipates that most operators will be back to full operating capacity over the next few days.

 

DOWNLOAD THE ENERGY DIGITAL IPAD APP

 

 

Share article

Jul 26, 2021

Ofwat allows retailers to raise prices from April

Ofwat
Utilities
water
prices
Dominic Ellis
3 min
Ofwat confirms levels of bad debt costs across the business retail market are exceeding 2% of non-household revenue

Retailers can recover a portion of excess bad debt by temporarily increasing prices from April 2022, according to an Ofwat statement.

The regulator confirmed its view that levels of bad debt costs across the business retail market are exceeding 2% of non-household revenue, thereby allowing "a temporary increase" in the maximum prices. Adjustments to price caps will apply for a minimum of two years to reduce the step changes in price that customers might experience.

Measures introduced since March 2020 to contain the spread of Covid-19 could lead to retailers facing higher levels of customer bad debt. Retailers’ abilities to respond to this are expected to be constrained by Ofwat strengthening protections for non-household customers during Covid-19 and the presence of price caps.  

In April last year, Ofwat committed to provide additional regulatory protection if bad debt costs across the market exceeded 2% of non-household revenue. 

Georgina Mills, Business Retail Market Director at Ofwat said: “These decisions aim to protect the interests of non-household customers in the short and longer term, including from the risk of systemic Retailer failure as the business retail market continues to feel the impacts of COVID-19. By implementing market-wide adjustments to price caps, we aim to minimise any additional costs for customers in the shorter term by promoting efficiency and supporting competition.”  

There are also three areas where Ofwat has not reached definitive conclusions and is seeking further evidence and views from stakeholders:   

  1. Pooling excess bad debt costs – Ofwat proposes that the recovery of excess bad debt costs is pooled across all non-household customers, via a uniform uplift to price caps. 
  2. Keeping open the option of not pursuing a true up – For example if outturn bad debt costs are not materially higher than the 2% threshold. 
  3. Undertaking the true up – If a 'true up' is required, Ofwat has set out how it expects this to work in practice. 

Further consultation on the proposed adjustments to REC price caps can be expected by December.

Anita Dougall, CEO and Founding Partner at Sagacity, said Ofwat’s decision comes hot on the heels of Ofgem’s price cap rise in April.

"While it’s great that regulators are helping the industry deal with bad debt in the wake of the pandemic, raising prices only treats the symptoms. Instead, water companies should head upstream, using customer data to identify and rectify the causes of bad debt, stop it at source and help prevent it from occurring in the first place," she said.

"While recouping costs is a must, water companies shouldn’t just rely on the regulator. Data can help companies segment customers, identify and assist customers that are struggling financially, avoiding penalising the entire customer in tackling the cause of the issue."

United Utilities picks up pipeline award

A race-against-time plumbing job to connect four huge water pipes into the large Haweswater Aqueduct in Cumbria saw United Utilities awarded Utility Project of the Year by Pipeline Industries Guild.

The Hallbank project, near Kendal, was completed within a tight eight-day deadline, in a storm and during the second COVID lockdown last November – and with three hours to spare. Principal construction manager John Dawson said the project helped boost the resilience of water supplies across the North West.

“I think what made us stand out was the scale, the use of future technology and the fact that we were really just one team, working collaboratively for a common goal," he said.

Camus Energy secures $16m funding

Camus Energy, which provides advanced grid management technology, has secured $16 million in a Series A round, led by Park West Asset Management and joined by Congruent VenturesWave Capital and other investors, including an investor-owned utility. Camus will leverage the operating capital to expand its grid management software platform to meet growing demand from utilities across North America.

As local utilities look to save money and increase their use of clean energy by tapping into low-cost and low-carbon local resources, Camus' grid management platform provides connectivity between the utility's operations team, its grid-connected equipment and customer devices.

Share article