Unplanned works on fields and systems pumping Norwegian gas to other European countries will reduce Norway’s outbound gas flows for up to four weeks, which, according to traders, will further boost natural gas prices in Europe.
According to Norwegian gas operator Gassco, two unplanned events are currently reducing day-ahead and within-day supplies and may continue to do so for up to four weeks.
On Sunday, an outage affecting the fields delivering gas into the SEGAL pipeline system occurred, and according to Gassco data as of Monday morning local time, unplanned corrective maintenance on fields delivering into the SEGAL system will reduce gas availability by 5.8 million cubic meters for a period of between one and two weeks.
This outage adds to an outage at the Åsgard field, where a compressor failure requires unplanned works and flows would be reduced by 8.6 million cu m for between three and four weeks.
Prices at the Dutch TTF gas hub have been moving up on the news of the outage, a European gas trader told S&P Global Platts on Monday.
In the UK, wholesale gas prices rose slightly on Friday, with the Norwegian outage at Åsgard contributing to the rise along with rising exports and withdrawals from storage. Prices further rose on Monday morning UK time, as planned maintenance at some UK sites and unplanned outages at others combined to push prices up.
This summer, natural gas prices in the UK surged to the highest for a summer season, with Europe’s natural gas market the most bullish in years as higher-than-expected summer demand and a tighter market drive natural gas price futures to levels last seen during this past winter’s supply crunch.
The past winter season in Europe was one of the coldest this decade, sending gas demand soaring and the level of natural gas stored in tanks across Europe dropping to below average levels.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.