Underground storage of natural gas plays a vital role in balancing our region’s energy supply and demand. SoCalGas® owns and operates numerous underground storage facilities located within Southern California.
Of our total 136-billion cubic feet (Bcf) of storage capacity, 83 Bcf is allocated to our core residential, small industrial and commercial customers. About four Bcf of space is used for system balancing. The remaining capacity is available to other customers.
Benefits of underground storage include imbalance protection, curtailment protection and price arbitrage. Storage can be used to avoid imbalance penalties from monthly or daily balancing violations.
To avoid the suspension of natural gas supplies from a curtailment event, storage will move customers with firm withdrawal service back to the number seven level of the curtailment queue. Storage can be used to take advantage of the swings in natural gas prices to generate profits or reduce costs. Storage can also help customers maintain non-core rate eligibility, eliminate the hassle that is associated with other back up fuel systems, and help keep plants running and delivery schedules on track.
Natural Gas Storage Rights for April 2015 Storage Year
SoCalGas is offering natural gas storage capacity rights (inventory, injection and withdrawal) for the storage year starting April 1, 2015 for whole-year terms of one or multiple years.
The use of the storage capacity is governed by the G-TBS tariff and the Transaction Based Storage Service Agreement, which is Schedule I to the Master Services Contract.
Some important aspects of the storage service are:
- Each component of storage is subject to its own rate cap as per the G-TBS tariff.
- Storage deals will be posted, disclosing the customer, price, term and capacity.
- Secondary market trading of storage capacity is allowed.
- The use of interruptible injection and withdrawal rights will be prioritized based on price.
- Storage service is located at the SoCalGas-City Gate.
- The current fuel charge of 2.4 percent will be adjusted to reflect actual usage over a three-year period ending December 31, 2014. Fuel is charged year round on injection, with no other variable storage charges.
- Interruptible withdrawal from storage counts towards the Winter Deliveries requirement of Rule 30.
- SoCalGas offers interruptible off-system delivery service to interstate pipelines.
How to Acquire Storage Services
If you'd like to acquire storage services, submit a written binding or non-binding bid, via email to email@example.com specifying:
- The levels of firm inventory
- Injection and withdrawal capacities
- Annual demand charge
Any combination of inventory, injection and withdrawal will be considered. Show the demand charge as a total annual dollar amount or a price per decatherm of inventory capacity.
California Energy Hub
California Energy Hub® offers several services for Southern California's natural gas market. These include traditional hub services such as natural gas parking and loaning, natural gas storage, and natural gas sales from CPUC-authorized projects.
Park and Loan
Effective July 2008, SoCalGas established the new G-PAL tariff. This tariff offers, when available, interruptible natural gas parking and loaning services to any qualified creditworthy party.
Natural gas parking is the temporary storage of natural gas on the SoCalGas system, and natural gas loaning is the temporary lending of natural gas from the SoCalGas system.
Rates for this service are negotiated on an individual transaction basis based on current market conditions. The negotiated rate includes the transmission of natural gas between the city gate and the storage fields. Prerequisites for this service are an executed Master Services Contract (MSC) and an MSC Schedule O.
As required by D.07-12-019, SoCalGas will post on a weekly basis at its Electronic Bulletin Board (EBB): net hub position, net volumes parked and loaned, withdrawal schedules for all hub volumes parked and repayment schedules for all hub volumes loaned.
- G-PAL Tariff (PDF)
- Operations Park and Loan Services Agreement (PDF)
- Operational Hub Positions (PDF)
- Interruptible Storage Injection and Withdrawal Auction -- Storage holders may improve the flow of their interruptible storage injection and withdrawal rights by participating in a web-based auction to bid up the priority of their interruptible rights. These auctions are conducted on a regular basis to establish the priority of interruptible rights for the Next Day strip as defined on ICE.
Natural Gas Sales from CPUC-Authorized Projects
California Energy Hub conducts natural gas sales from a decommissioned natural gas storage field pursuant to CPUC Decision No. 01-06-081 dated June 28, 2001. California Energy Hub also conducts natural gas sales from other cushion natural gas projects. When required, SoCalGas reworks wells in existing storage fields creating additional storage inventory and releasing cushion natural gas for sale.
SoCalGas has received CPUC authorization to engage in exploration and production activities for natural gas at its storage properties. Proceeds from the sale of natural gas into the California marketplace will be shared with ratepayers and will contribute to further exploration activities at the properties.
California Energy Hub Informational Postings
As required by D.07-12-019, SoCalGas will post all storage transactions on its EBB within one business day of execution.