Here is a look at today’s fundamentals.
A warm trend is starting to take over the Western US as more than half pace above normal over the next 10 days, especially in Mid-C as 4/7 stations project an anomaly greater than one degree. NP looks to be the exception as most stations fall within a fraction of normal, though Vacaville projects 3.4 degrees below average.
Seattle is forecasting a high of 64 on the 12th, enough for ten degrees above normal and ten degrees warmer than projected yesterday. Winter isn’t entirely finished however as temps will fall back into the 40’s by the 16th.
Portland gets one degree warmer than Seattle on the 12th but will see a similar slide below normal, potentially for the rest of March if the current forecast holds true.
Watch for significant runoff to come out of the low to mid-level elevations as Spokane shows temps rising to the mid-60s by Monday as well. Temps will fall back below normal soon after, but it may be enough to clear everything under 2,500 feet.
No extreme temperature swings in Burbank as every day in the next 21 stays within seven degrees of normal, with most much closer than that. March looks to be a fairly neutral degree-day month.
San Jose will switch from above-normal highs through the weekend to sustained cooler temps for the remainder of the month, at least that’s what the forecast suggests. Highs will peak at 72 on the 12th and fall to a high of just 56 by the 16th.
While Sacramento’s highs will jump into the 70’s moving into next week, the real story may be the low of 38 looming on the horizon (15th to be exact). The cold snap looks short lived as a return to normal follows soon after.
Phoenix is taking on an early spring as daily highs will stay in the 80’s for all but one day over the next seven days. Highs will hit 83 both tomorrow and Friday, each eight degrees above normal.
Considerably cooler in Vegas as highs fall below 70 multiple times through the weekend, though they are projected to drop below normal just once in the same span of time. Degree days may be closer to neutral beginning on the 12th and extending into the end of next week.
No cold snaps on the horizon for Denver with just one day expected to fall below normal through March 21st. Worth noting the 11th through the 13th look significantly cooler than what was forecasted yesterday.
Mid-C demand dropped nearly 300 MW day-on-day in terms of daily average loads thanks to late-afternoon demand falling 1,200 MW. Week-on-week loads plummeted as well, coming up 1,200 MW lower yesterday compared to a week prior.
Just a small 110 MW difference in average daily loads yesterday, a far cry from the 600 MW week-on-week drop. Minimum loads fell to 9,554 MW last night, 370 MW lower than early Tuesday.
Essentially unchanged day-on-day demand in SP as average daily loads increased 9 MW. Loads decreased 600 MW week-on-week however, largely thanks to falling off-peak hour loads.
The 10-Day RFC forecast is set to increase 400 aMW over the next four days before beginning a steady decline through the 14th, culminating in 1,800 aMW shed altogether. STP projects even lower figures though it follows a similar path.
With the first moderate warm up on the way, let’s set a reference point for the low-level snow cover and follow-up next week with the aftermath.
Compare the sideflows cfs today vs either of the previous two years and you’ll notice maybe half the CFS for 2018. There should be a meaningful change a week from now.
The Upper Columbia Sideflow paces behind each of the previous four water years, though this week has generally shown to be the beginning of the runoff in earnest.
ISO outages continue to pile up having increased 5,400 MW since Feb 27th and mark their highest point in the past six months. Hydro added 300 MW in the same span of time but has otherwise stayed relatively stable.
Peak flow reached 4,003 yesterday afternoon, the second lowest hourly-peak of the week, and 130 MW lower than Monday’s high. Average daily flow decreased 55 MW day-on-day as well.
The MC-BC line continues to switch directions each day though it ran mostly south yesterday with a daily average of -44, down from a positive 154 on Monday. Peak flows also fell yesterday, dropping to a high of 760 from Monday’s 1,731.
Enjoy your week,