Some notable quotes in this story:
Japanese utility Hokuriku Electric, which operates in western Japan, said it would not switch from coal to LNG even if prices dropped further.
“We barely have the capacity to switch swiftly from coal to LNG and vice versa,” the company said.
Japanese utilities are unable to dip into the cheaper spot LNG market because so much of their supply is being met by the existing higher-priced long-term contracts.
That is a hangover from the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster that shuttered the country’s reactors which had met 30% of Japan’s power needs. Without the nuclear power, utilities rushed to sign gas contracts, which are just starting to kick in.
What does the future of the Japanese electricity sector look like?