UK’s Rough gas storage loses clout as LNG flows in

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Britain’s largest gas storage site has lost some influence in supplying the
market this winter as more flexible sources such as liquefied natural gas
LNG) terminals have gained a bigger role covering peak-time demand. Centrica’s Rough storage site off the east coast of Yorkshire can hold
around 70 percent of Britain’s gas stocks and has been a key source of
heating gas on cold winter days. But since last winter, gas supply capacity at two of Britain’s LNG terminals
has increased by 50 percent each, lifting the potential for more cooled gas
to enter the UK. ‘Rough is still critical to the UK market but the increase in extra flexible
capacity has taken some pressure off,’ said Andrew Horstead, head of
research at energy consultancy Utilyx. Key LNG supplier Qatar has also recently expanded production capacity by 7.8
million tonnes per year and is set to open another facility within one
month’s time. ‘Given the extra capacity coming on stream in Qatar, following delays from
last year, there’s more supply available to the market and the UK is one of
the few markets that has the capacity to absorb it,’ Horstead said.

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