Centrica’s storage arm has confirmed that there will be no further injections of gas at the Rough storage facility in storage year 2017/18. Long term gas prices increased marginally on the news.
The ageing facility, which has been responsible for the lion’s share of UK gas storage, has suffered technical issues for some time. As a result, there have been no injections at the site since last summer.
That left UK gas storage at historically low levels last winter, but the system coped with extra gas imported via the Zeebrugge interconnector, plus supplies from Norway ramping up 22%, according to analysis from pricing firm ICIS. However, the firm noted that gas prices for delivery over the year ahead hit two year highs last winter, up 42% on average during the first quarter of 2017.
In a statement, Centrica Storage Limited (CSL) said it “has concluded that, as a reasonable and prudent operator, based upon the results of its well testing program, Rough cannot safely re-commence injection operations in the 2017/18 Storage Year.
“CSL has made this decision based on the results of the well testing program to date which, due to the age of the asset, have confirmed a number of different potential containment failure modes in a number of the wells.”
The firm said it would now cease its current tests, having covered two thirds of the facility, but would carry out tests on some wells to plot Rough’s commercial future.
CSL added that it will continue to provide withdrawal services in respect of the 2016/17 storage year.
See the statement here.