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Power Blackout Risks Loom For Quarter Of All Americans

Power Blackout Risks Loom For Quarter Of All Americans

The US heating season has officially begun, and new warnings show that a quarter of all Americans could experience energy emergencies this winter if temperatures fall below average due to tight fossil fuel supplies.

Power grids from the Great Lakes to Louisiana, New England, Carolinas, and all of Texas are the most at risk for power supply shortfalls during high-demand periods, according to Bloomberg, citing a new report from the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC), a regulatory body that manages grid stability.

NERC said a cold snap for an extended period could spark grid strain due to soaring power demand from households and businesses. This would cause supplies of natural gas, coal, and backup diesel generators to draw down more quickly and possibly experience shortages.

“The trend is we see more areas at risk, we see more retirements of critical generation, fuel challenges and we are doing everything we can. 

“These challenges don’t kind of appear out of nowhere,” John Moura, NERC’s director of reliability assessment, said during a media briefing.

For instance, the demand for diesel is rising, but East Coast supplies are at record lows for this time of year. Shortage of fuel used to power the economy, from heating to trucking, has about 25 days left of supplies in storage. Any supply disruption could leave power generation plants with supply gaps this winter.

Jim Matheson, chief executive officer of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association, told Bloomberg that electricity demand is set to outpace “available supply during peak winter conditions, consumers face an inconceivable but real threat of rolling blackouts.”

Matheson warned: “It doesn’t have to be this way. But absent a shift in state and federal energy policy, this is a reality we will face for years to come.”

…click on the above link to read the rest…

Arctic Blast To Blanket Eastern Half Of US Next Week

Arctic Blast To Blanket Eastern Half Of US Next Week

A cold blast will descend on the eastern US early next week, forcing tens of millions of Americans to turn on their heaters or fire up their stoves as the cold season comes early.

“It will feel more like November for many next week,” AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Tyler Roys said.

Unseasonably cold weather begins Monday and could last through the week and extend down to the Gulf of Mexico. There’s also a risk of snow across the Great Lakes, Midwest, and New England.

AccuWeather’s models expect temperatures to dive 10-20 degrees Fahrenheit below average for the first half of next week for the entire eastern half of the country.

“Daytime temperatures will be stuck in the 30s and 40s F across the upper Mississippi Valley and Great Lakes region on Monday. Highs are forecast to generally be in the 40s across the interior Northeast on Tuesday, with 50s from Washington, DC, to Boston,” AccuWeather said.

The cold blast would indicate surging demand for power as tens of millions of Americans crank up their thermostats to stay warm. Heating demand will rise next week and may put a bid under natural gas prices.

Some good news is US NatGas prices have declined for eight consecutive weeks, with prices down more than 30% from a 14-year high in August.

But the downturn could be short-lived because US NatGas stockpiles are still below average for this time of year.

“Globally, we’re feeling better about ourselves and about the natural gas storage levels that we have now,” Gary Cunningham, director of market research at risk management firm Tradition Energy, told Bloomberg last week.

Cunningham said traders have so far priced in mild temperatures in NatGas markets for the Northern Hemisphere, which helps curb demand but warned, “All of that can change very quickly and dramatically if we have a cold start to winter.”

“Dangerous” Heat Dome Shifts Eastward, Triple-Digit Temps Expected For Southeast

“Dangerous” Heat Dome Shifts Eastward, Triple-Digit Temps Expected For Southeast

A heat dome hovering over the northern Plains has begun to shift eastward early this week, expected to bring triple-digit temperatures across southern and eastern regions of the U.S.

Dangerous heat will continue to make headlines from the central U.S. to the Southeast. One more day of well above normal, near-record and record-breaking heat is expected from the central Plains to the Upper Midwest.

Excessive Heat Warnings remain in effect for the Red River Valley of the North and the greater Minneapolis area. High temperatures up to 100 degrees along with high humidity will lead to head indices into the mid-100s …

“The center of the heat wave begins to transition further east on Tuesday into the Great Lakes, with forecast highs in the mid- to upper 90s, up to 15-20 degrees above normal.

“In addition to hot high temperatures, very warm, near-record and record-breaking low temperatures in the 70s will provide little relief from the heat overnight. Temperatures will also warm up across the Southeast on Wednesday, with highs into the low 100s expectedMaximum heat indices may reach as high as 110 degrees along the central Gulf Coast when factoring in high humidity. High temperatures in general will be hot and a bit above normal across most of the central and eastern U.S. outside of the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic,” the National Weather Service wrote in an early morning weather outlook.  

At 0800 ET, at least nine million people across eight northern and central U.S. states, including Minnesota, Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota, Michigan, Wisconsin, Nebraska, and Kansas, were under heat alerts. That number should exponentially increase as the heat dome moves eastward.

Summer begins Tuesday, and large swaths of the Central and southern parts of the country could see above-average max temperatures through the end of the month.

Above-average weather will increase cooling demand from households and businesses, may strain power grids, and result in higher electricity costs for tens of millions of Americans, or worst, power blackouts.

A Bomb Cyclone Could Wallop Northeast With Heavy Snow 

A Bomb Cyclone Could Wallop Northeast With Heavy Snow 

Despite the unseasonably warm temperatures in the eastern US earlier this week, winter isn’t over with eleven days left in the season.

AccuWeather forecasters warn a potential ‘bomb cyclone’ could unleash accumulating snowfall from the central Appalachians to the interior Northeast on Friday through Saturday.

“Confidence is growing for a significant storm that will bring wide-reaching impacts,” AccuWeather Meteorologist Alex DaSilva said.

The end-of-the-week storm will take aim at the Eastern Seaboard and is expected to undergo rapid strengthening, perhaps reaching bomb cyclone status.

“Winds across the entire Northeast and mid-Atlantic will be very gusty Saturday and Saturday night,” DaSilva said.

AccuWeather meteorologists are still determining the rain-snow line, but models already suggest somewhere around Interstate 95.

In the interior Northeast, accumulating snowfall is expected.

“It is within this Appalachian zone that the air will be cold enough at the onset of precipitation, or turn colder dramatically during the event, for mostly snow to fall, with accumulations ranging from a few inches to a foot or more,” AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Alex Sosnowski said.

Nothing is locked in as meteorologists will likely be more definite in their forecasts on Thursday evening.

“Potential Polar Vortex Event” Could Spark Bullish Reversal In NatGas 

“Potential Polar Vortex Event” Could Spark Bullish Reversal In NatGas 

Since mid-October, U.S. natural gas futures have been beaten down 40% as the narrative of colder weather and tight supplies quickly flipped and crushed bullish traders. As the Northern Hemisphere winter is less than two weeks away, new weather models suggest “significantly colder” temperatures could return for parts of the U.S. later this month into early 2022.

Meteorologists at private weather forecasting firm BAMWX expect a bullish setup for natgas futures. They say the narrative is flipping from warmer weather to the complete opposite as an Arctic polar vortex could plunge parts of the U.S. into a much colder weather pattern in January than today’s currently mild, above-trend temperatures.

“Seeing an interesting pattern developing ahead leading up to Christmas and into early January ’22, as higher pressure looks to finally re-establish towards Alaska and the North Atlantic, pushing cold from the Arctic down into the US (after a record warm start to the month). If the MJO (Madden-Julian Oscillation) can continue to progress through phase 7 into 8 (and possibly into 1) mid to late December, this can also increase the potential for a Polar Vortex displacement event, sending more consistent cold air deeper into the US…a big risk to watch for the energy markets ahead,” Kirk Hinz, the chief meteorologist at BAMWX, noted. 

BAMWX outlines now could be the time to find a long entry into natgas futures, or as they put it, “long UNG,” the United States Natural Gas Fund, LP. ETF. Their reasoning behind the play is quite simple:

Long UNG Equity, Why? Polar Vortex Jan 2022 Northeast – Front-month NG1 40% drawdown in 6 weeks – Things can change on a dime but the setup is very good in our view – When you get a nice – healthy- capitulation …

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Northern California Swamped With “Historic Rain” Amid Rare Atmospheric River Event 

Northern California Swamped With “Historic Rain” Amid Rare Atmospheric River Event 

The National Weather Service’s (NWS) Sacramento office said “potentially historic rain” rain has fallen in parts of Northern California after a bomb cyclone accompanied an atmospheric river that unleashed massive amounts of moisture pulled in from the Pacific Ocean.

Northern California bore the brunt late Saturday/Sunday, with record rainfall in some areas. NWS Bay Area said“We just passed the Gold Rush year of 1849 for 7th wettest October on record for Downtown SF. 1876 (3.36) here we come..(Current value is 3.14 which ties 1849).” 

“If you are in the vicinity of a recent burn scar and haven’t already, prepare now for likely debris flows,” the Sacramento weather service tweeted. “If you are told to evacuate by local officials, or you feel threatened, do not hesitate to do so. If it is too late to evacuate, get to higher ground.”

Flooded streets were reported across the Bay Area, closing some in Berkeley and Oakland’s Bay Bridge toll plaza. Just north of San Francisco, a whopping 6 inches of rain has fallen this weekend. Rainfall estimates for the Bay Area show at least 3 inches have fallen, trouncing any other storm in years.

“Some of our higher elevation locations could see 6, 7, 8 inches of rain before we’re all said and done,” Sean Miller, a meteorologist for the NWS in Monterey. 

The convergence of storms brings Northern California a huge relief amid devastating droughts and wildfires this past summer.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Bomb Cyclone To Unleash Atmospheric River Over Northern California

Bomb Cyclone To Unleash Atmospheric River Over Northern California

A “bomb cyclone” will unleash an atmospheric river Saturday night into Sunday across Northern California.

“By Saturday night, a rapidly intensifying Pacific cyclone directing a powerful atmospheric river squarely at the West Coast delivers a fire hose of rich subtropical moisture into California,” the Weather Prediction Center (WPC) said Friday. 

These two simultaneous weather phenomenons will result in the season’s first snow event in the Sierras and torrential rains for the coastline and valleys across central and Northern California.

“You might hear this term referencing the Sunday-Monday storm coming our way. A bomb cyclone is simply a storm that gets very strong very quickly. It drops at least 24 mb (a unit of pressure) in 24 hours. The lower the pressure, the stronger the storm,” said Sacramento-based KTXL’s Adam Epstein

In Northern California, rainfall estimates through the end of the weekend are around 2-4 inches. In San Francisco, estimates are upwards of 3 inches.

WPC warns that some areas could receive 8-10 inches.

The rare level 5 atmospheric river event could be enough rain to alleviate drought-stricken areas ravaged by wildfires.

“An atmospheric river marked as a category 4 or a 5 is capable of producing remarkable rainfall totals over three or more days, likely to exceed 10% to 15% of a typical year’s precipitation in some locations,” said Marty Ralph, director of the Center for Western Weather and Water Extremes at the University of California San Diego.

In higher elevations, wet snow across the Sierras could amount to 1-3 feet.

The news gets better for Northern California and the Pacific Northwest as WPC has declared La Niña conditions, which means wetter than average conditions will ease areas plagued by drought. As for Southern and Central California, La Niña means a drier than average winter.

200 Million Americans Roast In Two Massive “Heat Domes” 

200 Million Americans Roast In Two Massive “Heat Domes” 

At the beginning of the week, we told readers the dog days of summer have finally arrived with above-average temperatures for most of the country.

By late Thursday, watch/warning/advisory alerts for dangerous heat extended to nearly 200 million Americans as multiple heat domes scorch the Pacific Northwest, Central states, and East Coast.

“Dangerous heat and humidity in the Northwest, Northeast, and central portions of the CONUS have prompted Excessive Heat Warnings and Heat Advisories. Severe thunderstorms will impact the areas from the Midwest into the Great Lakes through Thursday,” the National Weather Service (NWS) wrote on its website. 

“Around 195 million Americans are under a watch/warning/advisory for dangerous heat. Yes, it’s summer, but this type of heat can kill,” the National Weather Service (NWS) warned in a tweet. 

Temperature forecasts for the lower 48 states show mean temperatures will peak Friday/Saturday and trend lower through Monday, with another spurt of hot weather slated through Aug. 22.

NYMEX Natgas futures have slumped nearly 4% in the last four sessions as traders begin to price in colder weather next week.

As we’ve shown, average temperatures are peaking for the lower 48 states and should begin to decline after this month.

Meanwhile, hot temps and a megadrought in the US West have fueled 105 large files burning 2.4 million acres in 14 states. The largest fire is Dixie in northern California, burning more than 500,000 acres so far.

Making matters worse, Bloomberg reports a La Niña weather pattern is forecasted to develop during the August-October season and last through the 2021-22 winter.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Scientists Call Northwest Heatwave the ‘Most Extreme in World Weather Records’

Wildfires rage amid a devastating heatwave in the Pacific Northwest

Flames surround the drought-stricken Shasta Lake in Lakehead, California on July 2, 2021. (Photo: Josh Edelson/AFP via Getty Images)

Scientists Call Northwest Heatwave the ‘Most Extreme in World Weather Records’

“Never in the century-plus history of world weather observation have so many all-time heat records fallen by such a large margin.”

A pair of climate scientists on Thursday said the record-high temperatures that have ravaged the northwestern U.S. and western Canada over the past week—killing hundreds and sparking dozens of wildfires—represent the “world’s most extreme heatwave in modern history.”

“It’s not hype or exaggeration to call the past week’s heatwave the most extreme in world weather records.”
—Bob Henson, Jeff Masters

“Never in the century-plus history of world weather observation have so many all-time heat records fallen by such a large margin than in the past week’s historic heatwave in western North America,” meteorologist Bob Henson and former National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) hurricane scientist Jeff Masters wrote for Yale Climate Connections.

“It’s not hype or exaggeration to call the past week’s heatwave the most extreme in world weather records,” they argued. “The only heatwave that compares is the great Dust Bowl heatwave of July 1936 in the U.S. Midwest and south-central Canada. But even that cannot compare to what happened in the Northwest U.S. and western Canada over the past week.”

In British Columbia, the chief coroner said her office has received nearly 500 reports of “sudden and unexpected” deaths since last Friday, many of which are believed to be connected to the record temperatures that the region has suffered in recent days.

Residents of the small British Columbia village of Lytton—which on Tuesday recorded Canada’s all-time high temperature of 121°F—were forced to evacuate Wednesday as a wildfire ripped through the area and quickly engulfed the small town, destroying homes and buildings.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Dozens Die Across British Columbia And Pacific Northwest Amid “Historic” Heat Wave

Dozens Die Across British Columbia And Pacific Northwest Amid “Historic” Heat Wave

The Pacific Northwest is experiencing a multi-day heat wave that we said last week would be “historic.” The unrelenting triple-digit temperatures shattered records on Monday and Tuesday and have stressed out power grids in the Pacific Northwest and British Columbia. Many folks in these areas don’t have central air condition and struggle to survive in these unprecedented conditions. At the moment, dozens have died of heat-related complications since last Friday.

Just north of the Pacific Northwest is Canada’s westernmost province, British Columbia, where Death Valley hot temperatures reached triple digits. Many folks in this region of the Pacific coastline and mountain ranges don’t have central air condition and found it challenging to stay cool.

CNN reports more than 230 deaths across British Columbia have been recorded since Friday. The coroner for the region called it an “unprecedented time.”

“Since the onset of the heat wave late last week, the BC Coroners Service has experienced a significant increase in deaths reported where it is suspected that extreme heat has been contributory,” Chief Coroner Lisa Lapointe said in a statement.

BC Coroners Service said it usually receives on average 130 deaths over four days, but from Friday through Monday, at least 233 deaths were reported. The chief coroner warned this number is expected to climb as new data comes in.

“Environmental heat exposure can lead to severe or fatal results, particularly in older people, infants and young children and those with chronic illnesses,” the coroner’s office said. 

As for the Pacific Northwest, a dozen deaths in Washington and Oregon are believed to be due to heat-related complications. Temperatures in Seattle and Portland have recorded highs over 100 degrees for multiple days.

We noted Tuesday, Portland and Seattle experienced temperatures 30 to 40 degrees above average.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Triple-Digit Heat Dome Bakes Pacific Northwest, Triggers First Blackout

Triple-Digit Heat Dome Bakes Pacific Northwest, Triggers First Blackout

The Pacific Northwest is experiencing a multi-day heat wave that we said last week would be “historic.” The unrelenting triple-digit temperatures shattered records across the region and have stressed out power grids where rolling blackouts have been reported.

Bloomberg reports Avista Corporation, which supplies electricity to 340,000 residential, commercial, and industrial customers, triggered its first rolling blackout across its grid after it became overloaded Monday evening. Rotating outages first hit 9,300 customers late Monday and could expand as temperatures remain well above average through July 4.

Avista was the first major utility to report rolling blackouts in the Northwest region, and with positive temperature anomalies to linger through the week, it may not be the last.

Avista has never “experienced this kind of demand on our system and this kind of impact to our system,” Heather Rosentrater, senior vice president of energy delivery at the utility company, told reporters during a press conference Monday. She called the weather event “very unprecedented.”

As we noted last Friday, “a “historic” heat wave was set to transform the Pacific Northwest into a furnace this weekend. It has the potential to shatter long-standing temperature records.” And that is precisely what it did.

Major metros, such as Portland and Seattle, broke record highs by huge margins as positive temperature anomalies reached between 30 to 40 degrees.

Portland hit 116 degrees by Monday afternoon, the highest temperature in more than eight decades of record-keeping. It was the third day of triple-digit temps.

Seattle recorded 108 degrees Monday afternoon, easily surpassing its previous 103-degree record from 2009. Positive temperature anomalies for the city yesterday were 34 degrees, usually temps average around 74 degrees.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

“Unprecedented Event” – Pacific Northwest Set To Shatter Heat Records This Weekend 

“Unprecedented Event” – Pacific Northwest Set To Shatter Heat Records This Weekend 

A “historic” heat wave is set to transform the U.S. Pacific Northwest into a furnace this weekend. It has the potential to shatter long-standing temperature records, according to Reuters.

“This will be setting the stage for the beginning of a potential historic heat wave for the Northwest this weekend,” the National Weather Service (NWS) said. Excessive heat warnings are in effect for much of Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and northern parts of California. 

“High temperatures will still be 10 to 20 degrees above average and lead into the weekend when numerous record highs are likely,” NWS said. 

“A number of Portland Airport high-temperature records are in jeopardy this weekend. Not only will PDX likely set the warmest temperature for June 26th & June for that matter, but the all time record temperature of 107°F remains in serious jeopardy,” NWS Portland tweeted. 

NWS Portland added: the “extreme heat wave this weekend is expected to break several daily, monthly and possibly all-time records. This is an unprecedented event…have a plan in place to remain cool!”

According to Axios“the heat wave will affect a region where many people lack central air conditioning, raising the likelihood for public health impacts. In addition, power demand is likely to spike at a time when hydropower resources are running relatively low due to drier than average conditions.” 

Heat waves such as this one have been impacting much of the western half of the US this year, sparking a megadrought, fallow lands, and soon-to-be grasshopper plague that may decimate crops further.

Record Warmth In Plains, Midwest?; NYC To Top 60s This Week 

Record Warmth In Plains, Midwest?; NYC To Top 60s This Week 

About ten days ago, we penned a weather note to readers titled “”Early Spring, Winter Is Over?” – New Weather Models Suggest Warmer Weather Nears,” outlining how after a polar vortex split poured Arctic air into much of the US, wreaked havoc on power grids, but there was light at the end of the tunnel as the first half of March would expose much of the country to warmer weather trends.

Well, eight days into March and more than 100 million Americans across the Southwest, West Central, East Central, Southeast, Mid-Atlantic, and Northeast will experience warmer than average temperatures this week.

“The ridge of high pressure over the East will allow southerly winds to spread spring warmth northward and influence conditions for most areas east of the Rockies. Meanwhile, cooler than average temperatures will develop in the West, particularly in the Southwest,” according to The Weather Channel

The mild setup for this week is a relief from last month. Highs could be 10 to 25 degrees above average in the East, except for Florida, by Tuesday. By Wednesday, most parts of the Northeast could be in the 60s.

Here are some of the forecasted temperature highs this week for major metro areas. By mid-late week, NYC could be averaging in the mid-60s.

“High temperatures will be 20 to 35 degrees above average from the Northern and Central Plains into the Great Lakes region through Wednesday. Highs in the 60s and 70s are anticipated with 50s toward the Canadian border. Temperatures near 80 are even possible in parts of the Central Plains,’ The Weather Channel said. 

Temperature anomalies show the widespread warming that will affect more than 100 million people.

Could the US planting season begin earlier this year with warming trends?

NYMEX Henry Hub Natural Gas futures blew through the 2.70 support level.

The warmer weather is expected to last through Mar. 15, with slightly colder temperatures afterward. At this point, Americans will take any warm weather as the tail end of winter has been miserable. 

“Overwhelming Signal” – Major Winter Storm Threats For Million Of Americans Within Next Five Days

“Overwhelming Signal” – Major Winter Storm Threats For Million Of Americans Within Next Five Days

Earlier this week, we told readers in a note titled “Prepare For “Onslaught Of Winter Storms” In Coming Days” that “multiple rounds of snow, ice in the Midwest and East as bitterly cold temperatures grip parts of the nation.” A new weather model released on Thursday suggests this Saturday through next week potentially dangerous winter storms could materialize.

On Thursday, meteorologists at BAMWX updated their “Impactful Weather Outlook” between Feb. 13 and Feb. 21, indicating: major winter storms are possible” from Denver to Dallas to Chicago to Cleveland to Mid-Atlantic and Northeast states.

“An overwhelming signal seems to be developing for a major winter storm from the Deep South to the Ohio Valley into the NE early next week. Heres our 3-7 day hazards map and a blend of models 75th percentile data. Worth note deterministic data showing major snow numbers. #Snow,” BAMWX’s official Twitter account tweeted. 

Along with multiple storms forecasted across Midwest to the Northeast, a polar vortex split has dumped the winter’s most brutally cold weather into the country’s mid-section and the Northeast. This week temperatures were as low as 43 degrees below zero in northern Minnesota.

Diving temperatures helped catapult propane demand to a 17-year high last week.

Source: Bloomberg 

Arctic temperatures forced tens of millions of Americans to turn up their thermostats. Cooler temps could be sticking around through at least the mid-part of the month.

Increased demand for propane sent spot prices in Mont Belvieu, Texas, soaring, to around 85.50 cents per gallon, according to Refinitiv data, hitting two-year highs last month.

Besides propane, spot natgas prices have exploded in Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, as a sharp rise in heating demand has been seen in recent weeks because of fridge temperatures.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

 

New Year’s Week Storm Could Cause Havoc Across US 

New Year’s Week Storm Could Cause Havoc Across US 

A new storm will sweep across the country next week, just like the last one, from Southwest to the Plains to Midwest to East, spreading rain and snow along the way.

As 2020 concludes and 2021 is just days away, it appears more wicked weather is on the way. The storm will unfold in two phases, according to The Weather Channel.

The first phase will begin on Sunday night.

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