IEEE Power & Energy Magazine - November/December 2014 - 101

Centers/EMIC/2014-Electricity-Conference), I chaired a panel session that
discussed some of these challenges at
the gas-electricity nexus. gas has been
an important fuel for electricity in Texas
for decades. other regions of the United
States, particularly new England, and
other countries have only relatively recently increased the use of natural gas
as a fuel for generators, but this has already presented some problems. In new
England, for example, the combination
of high winter requirements for natural
gas for space heating and the relatively
limited gas-pipeline infrastructure have
generated problems with coordinating
the regional gas and electricity markets.
ISo new England, despite its ostensible
focus on wholesale electric power markets and reliability, has needed to develop in-house expertise in gas supply,
delivery, and availability.
As natural gas becomes even more
heavily utilized for power generation, the
regional gas and electricity markets will

become even more tightly coupled. with
a rising reliance on gas to balance increasing net load variability and uncertainty, gas
demand will become even more variable.
Among the various challenges at the gaselectricity nexus, dealing with the need for
even more variable natural gas fuel is a
problem that seems to be technically solvable. natural gas storage and other balancing options could allow for solutions that
are necessitated by the electricity industry,
where supply and demand must be continuously balanced. The natural gas industry
needs to adapt to the needs and wants of
the electric power industry, which is growing and will soon be the largest consumer
of gas. The solutions that are necessary for
the gas industry are likely to be relatively
simple because the natural gas system has
greater storage options and looser requirements on the balancing of gas supply and
demand than is required by the electric
power system.
The timing of electricity and gas
markets will likely need to be better

synchronized, as has been widely
recognized by the FErC and others.
Changes in timing have been implemented within some areas. To fully
utilize the operational flexibility of
natural-gas-fired generation, it will also
likely become necessary for there to be
more trading opportunities for natural
gas within the intraday and day-ahead
gas trading markets.
In other words, the natural gas trading
industry will need to make changes from
their current "banker hours." natural gas
traders may not appreciate this change,
but in my view, the increasing needs of
this new burgeoning customer, the electricity industry, will soon necessitate
a liquid seven-day-a-week gas trading
marketplace. I look forward to the natural gas industry making this change as
regions such as ErCoT move to even
higher levels of variable renewable resource integration.
p&e

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