January and February Weather Outlook

Let’s talk weather amidst the supply chaos that is gripping the eastern half of the United States.

I can’t believe I am saying this, but boy do we need a warm spell, as the industry is entering a crisis mode pursuant to supply.

One thing I have been noticing in the weather modeling is that the 11 to 15 day forecasts have been getting colder once they become the 6 to 10 day forecasts…in other words, the models are showing more warmth farther out than what we are experiencing once we reach those time frames. The models keep trending colder the closer we get. This is in stark contrast to what we experienced the past two years.

So the warm up period that was forecast for January 7th, back around Christmas, got pushed to the middle of the month, and now it seems like it’s getting pushed to the 20th-25th of January. Will this trend continue? We shall see. Here are some notable tweets from meteorologists from recent days:

That’s an example of what I am talking about.

This next tweet underscores the magnitude of the cold snap we are emerging from…the historic magnitude:

That’s a lot of natural gas, and to shatter a record by 25% is considerable, even though there is additional natural gas takeaway capacity now than in previous years.

Finally, here is the latest February and March outlooks from MDA…I can’t believe I am saying this, but that February outlook is concerning…because if we don’t get any warm up reprieve of at least a week over the eastern portion of the United States between now and then, we will remain in a state of chaos like we are now, which will likely only get worse.

I’ve seen that February look before…now, when was it….oh yeah…February, 2014. There’s that year again:

Here is what January of 2014 looked like compared to normal:

Here is what December through January 2014 looked like compared to normal.

Here is what December 2017 to now looks like.

Between November 1st 2013 through January 9th, 2014, we had 1,863 GWHDD’s.  For this year, we are at 1,752 GWHDD’s.  This year is the coldest such stretch since 2013-2014.

Taking all of this into account, when I was writing in October about this year being a possible mini-version of 2013-2014, we are closer to being a repeat right about now and based on the forecast, than a mini…and we are not experiencing mini-problems..they are real and significant.

Fun times…but also challenging times. Hang in there!

Jon Miller
Marketing Representative for NGL Supply Wholesale in Tulsa Oklahoma. Follow me on twitter @PropaneBuzz

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