Mexico Reduces Gas Imports to Favor Texas PipelinesBy Antonio Trujillo | Mon, 10/25/2021 - 11:05
In order to favor an increase supply in Texas natural gas, the Mexican government has decreased natural gas imports coming from the US, as shown by pipeline data.
Starting in October, and reportedly to be only seasonal, according to information from S&P Global Platts, Mexico will start to decrease the number of natural gas imports from the US. By way of the Samalayuca-Sasabe system, grid operators have more choices to reduce importers’ exposure to the US Southwest’s “more volatile, costly gas pricing.
Data shows that Mexico gas imports from the US' southwest, excluding the west portion of the state of Texas, have averaged a daily 570 million cubic feet in October, close to 200 million cubic feet less than September's average.
Approximately half of this reduction can be attributed to lower gas-fired power demand in Baja California, and the other half to “sharp drops in flows to Northwestern Mexico along Kinder Morgan’s Sierrita Pipeline,” a system which has no planned maintenance projects in the near future. On its part, gas demand has remained steady.
Northwest Mexico is the main region for US natural gas imports, comprising the states of Sonora, Sinaloa, Baja California and Baja California Sur.
Demand for natural gas in northwestern Mexico has remained steady, with an average of 460 million cubic feet only in the first fortnight of October, equivalent to an increase of only about 20 million cubic feet since the last two weeks of September.
“Data modeled by S&P Global Platts suggest that the increase in volume from the northwestern region of Mexico, which obtains its natural gas from Texas, could have replaced those influxes.” Natural gas has become more available in the northern regions of Mexico thanks to newer pipelines, which include Fermaca’s Waha system with a capacity for 5 billion daily cubic feet and the marine pipeline from TC’s South of Texas-Tuxpan, which transports 2.6 billion daily cubic feet of natural gas.