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MPSC Issues Summer Energy Appraisal Contact : Judy Palnau, 517-241-3323 Agency : Michigan Public Service

MPSC Issues Summer Energy Appraisal

Contact: Judy Palnau, 517-241-3323 Agency: Michigan Public Service Commission

May 23, 2014 - The Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) today released the "Michigan Energy Appraisal: Summer 2014." The appraisal, published since 1978, reviews the projected prices and availability of energy in Michigan over the winter months.

The demand for energy in Michigan is projected to increase across all sectors compared to last year, with the majority of growth occurring due to weather related factors. The first three months of 2014 were 21 percent colder than normal which contributed to higher consumption of electricity, natural gas, propane and heating oil. Assuming normal weather this summer, demand for electricity and natural gas (electric power sector) are expected to be higher than the same period last year, which was 12 percent cooler than normal (June August). On-highway diesel usage is also expected to grow, due largely to an increase in industrial production and trucking demand. In contrast, motor gasoline consumption is expected to see only slight growth as increased vehicle fuel efficiency and sustained high gasoline prices continue to place downward pressure on demand.

Electricity Assuming normal weather, Michigan's total electric sales are projected to increase by 1.9 percent in 2014. Increases are driven primarily by the residential sector with first quarter demand (January - March) well above last year, due in large part to heating demand. Over the summer months (June - August), aggregate electricity sales are expected to be higher than last year, which was 12 percent cooler than normal. Given the anticipated demand and reserve margins, there should be an adequate supply of electricity over the summer.

Natural Gas Higher demand across all sectors is expected to raise total annual natural gas sales in Michigan for 2014 to 859.9 billion cubic feet (Bcf), a 9.7 percent increase over 2013. In the residential and commercial sectors, severe winter weather from the polar vortex caused significant increases in demand. Due to a high reliance on natural gas as a direct heating fuel, the effect of prolonged low temperatures was more significant than in the industrial or electric generation sectors. Assuming a return to normal weather this summer, demand in the electric power sector is expected to increase as a result of higher demand for air conditioning.

Petroleum The Energy Information Administration (EIA) estimates that global petroleum consumption grew by 1.2 million barrels per day (bbl/d) in 2013. Total U.S. liquid fuels consumption rose by an estimated 2.1 percent in 2013, but this growth trend is expected to slow down in 2014. Since January 2014, the startup of TransCanada's Marketlink pipeline, which moves crude from Cushing, Okla., to the Gulf Coast, and strong refinery runs contributed to an increase in the West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil spot price. Prices ranged from an average of $94/bbl in January to $102/bbl in April. U.S. crude oil production is expected to remain strong and average 8.5 million bbl/d in 2014, and 9.2 million bbl/d in 2015 which would be the highest annual production average since 1972.

Motor Gasoline Gasoline sales in Michigan are expected to remain relatively flat in 2014, with a slight 0.6 percent increase over last year. Gasoline demand grew by 1.4 percent in 2013, only the second year of consumption increases since 2004. Stronger-than-expected growth in highway travel during the second half of 2013 contributed to the increase. Overall, gasoline consumption has been on a downward trend due in large part to increases in fleet-wide fuel efficiency and sustained high prices. During the AprilthroughSeptember summer driving season, regular gasoline retail prices are forecast to average about $3.57/gallon according to the EIA.

Distillate Fuel Oil Distillate sales in Michigan are projected to increase by 3 percent to 1,058.8 million gallons in 2014, following a similar increase of 2.7 percent in 2013. This growth reflects both colder temperatures this winter as well as growth in industrial production. First quarter industrial growth in 2014 was 3.8 percent higher than the same quarter in 2013. According to the EIA, onhighway diesel fuel retail prices, which averaged $3.92/gallon in 2013, will fall to an average of $3.87/gallon in 2014.

Propane This year's summer energy appraisal includes a special section on propane that summarizes the factors that led to the propane energy emergency that took place during the 2013- 2014 heating season. Efforts are ongoing between private and public sector stakeholders to address issues identified this year and to better prepare for the future.

The Michigan Energy Appraisal is prepared every six months. The Energy Appraisal is available on the Commission's website at:

The MPSC is an agency within the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs.

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