Perfect storm: Energy supply chain slashed by extreme weather
By Paul Takahashi February 17, 2021
Texas natural gas producers struggled to keep up with record demand during the historic winter storm that wreaked havoc on the state’s electricity grid and plunged millions of residents into frigid darkness.
The companies were challenged by power outages to oil and gas operations, freezing temperatures that immobilized and damaged equipment, and hazardous road conditions that hampered access to well sites. These factors caused the state’s crude production to fall by an estimated 2 million barrels per day and natural gas production to plummet by as much as 7 billion cubic feet per day, according to Bloomberg Intelligence and S&P Global Platts. The losses deprived Texas power plants of the natural gas needed to generate electricity for millions of Texas homes during periods of peak demand.
“These extreme weather conditions impacted every aspect of the Texas energy supply chain,” said Todd Staples, president of the Texas Oil and Gas Association. “The entire Texas system from the wellhead to the meter on the home is designed to deal with multiple 100-degree days rather than multiple single-digit days.”