STP Update – Oct 5

Good Afternoon,

Our friends at the NWRFC have updated their 120 day flow forecast (STP) for the northwest hydro projects.  I’d like to say it is a shocking forecast but that would be a lie, it is just a forecast.  Let’s begin by looking at the daily shapes:


Not a lot here to evoke irrational exuberance but there are nuggets of information if you look close enough.  The start of the forecast suggests a nearly 2000 mw increase on the first day or two versus last week – not sure where that is coming from.  At the end of October the RFC shaves additional water out of the last week and parks it in November:


As the Mid-C gets drier November gets more water … go figure.  Looking at their forecast from a different perspective – comparing to previous year’s, same week, sheds new light on the veracity of these numbers:


What leaps from the page, at least to me, is the relative bearishness of 2015 versus 2012 or 2013 or 2014, all years which had higher reservoir levels.  Unless the RFC is forecasting massive precip – in an El Nino nonetheless – I cannot see how you can predict November 2015 will have more water than November 2014.  Throw on the DC derate and stir it all up and you have the makings for bear stew but we’ll pass on that dish as we think the water is over-stated.