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Western Price Survey / Archives

Febuary 11, 2005
Cal-ISO Names New CEO, Board Chair

After a months-long search, the California Independent System Operator finally has found its new chief executive officer. The grid manager on Friday announced the appointment of Yakout Man-sour as its new president and CEO. Mansour will take over on March 1. He previously served as senior vice president of system operations and asset management for British Columbia Transmission Corp. Prior to his work for BCTC, Mansour was vice president of grid operations at BC Hydro.

Also on Friday, Michael Kahn stepped down as chair of the Cal-ISO Board of Governors. Kahn, who will continue to serve on the board, was replaced as chair by Ken Wiseman. Wiseman was named to the board by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger last October. Board member Tim Gage will serve as vice chair.

Weather and demand remained non-factors in power-price movement this week. Warm tem-peratures were recorded throughout the West, keeping a lid on power needs. The California Inde-pendent System Operator peak-load levels hovered close to 30,000 MW.

After opening on Monday in a range of 48 mills to 49.25 mills/KWh, the price for daytime power at the Palo Verde hub peaked at 52.75 mills/KWh on Wednesday. By Friday it was back down to 48.50 mills/KWh. The price of off-peak power began the week close to 35 mills/KWh and skipped up as high as 42.75 mills/KWh in late-week trading.

Northern and Southern California daytime power prices stayed pretty much in tandem this week, ranging from just under 54 mills/KWh on Monday before clawing up to a little more than 55 mills/KWh on Wednesday. By Friday they had slipped back down to between 52.50 mills and 53.75 mills/KWh. Packages of nighttime power changed hands for 43.50 mills/KWh at midweek, a gain of about 3 mills over Monday's price. The price jumped up to 46.75 mills/KWh for next-week deliveries.

In the Northwest, power costs could not manage to break through the 50 mills/KWh mark. The price of peak power at Mid-Columbia stuck close to 46 mills/KWh the first half of the week, skipped up to 49 mills/KWh on Wednesday, then sank back to the 46 mills to 47.25 mills/KWh range in Friday tradng.

In addition to the outages at some of the West's nuclear facilities, Cal-ISO reported that 790 MW Mohave Generating Station Unit No. 1 was off line all week, while Unit No. 2, also rated at 790 MW, was curtailed by 100 MW. A smattering of other outages throughout the grid operator's territory did not place much strain on the grid [Shauna O'Donnell].

Gas Prices in the West Flatline

The spot market for natural gas in the West this week resembled the market the week before and the week before that. The only noticeable difference being that the price of the commodity ranged a little lower than it had previously. The drop was also recorded within the week, with the deepest dip coming between the Thursday and Friday trading sessions.

At the Southern California board, spot gas changed hands for $5.70/MMBtu early in the week. Traders managed to get as much as $5.85/MMBtu this week before the price fell to a range of $5.625 to $5.68/MMBtu on Friday.

PG&E CityGate gas managed to close the week at about the same price recorded on Monday. Having hit $6.00/MMBtu at the beginning of the week, CityGate gas moved up to $6.15/MMBtu on Wednesday before slipping back to just under the $6 mark at the end of the week [S. O'D.].

Western Electricity Prices
February 7 - 11, 2005
Hub Peak (heavy) Off-peak (light)
Alberta Pool (C$) 9.50-285.50 7.90-130.08
Mid-Columbia 45-49 38.50-44.25
COB 48-52 42-45.50
NP 15 52-55.75 40.75-46.75
SP 15 52-56 39.75-46
Palo Verde 48-52.75 34.75-42.75

Archives of the Western Price Survey for the past year are also available online.

The Western Price Survey is excerpted from Energy NewsData's comprehensive regional news services. See for yourself how NewsData reporters put events in an accurate and meaningful context--request a sample of either or both California Energy Markets and Clearing Up.

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Contact Shauna O'Donnell, editor with questions regarding Price Survey Content.

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