News Releases

Cold Weather Prompts Record Demand For Natural Gas in the Reno-Sparks Area

Dec 18, 2006

Contact: Karl Walquist (775) 834-3891

Sierra Pacific Power's natural gas customers in the Reno-Sparks area have set an all-time peak for natural gas consumption, surpassing the record established two years ago. Customers consumed 136,602,000 cubic feet of gas for the 24-hour period beginning at 7 a.m. on Monday, Dec. 18, and ending at 7 a.m. on Tuesday,Dec. 19.

Cold temperatures and customer growth were the major factors cited for the natural gas consumption record, said Mike Smart, regional operations executive for Sierra Pacific. The previous all-time peak usage record for the area was 128,571,000 cubic feet of gas for the 24-hour period beginning on Monday, Nov. 29, 2004. 

Smart said that Sierra Pacific has had no problems meeting customer demand for natural gas.“The employees operating the gas system have worked hard to keep the gas flowing smoothly to customers,” he added. “They've made adjustments to our regulator stations in anticipation of the higher flows.”

Sierra Pacific serves approximately 144,000 natural gas customers in Reno-Sparks and outlying areas. In 2005, the utility completed construction of more than 20,000 feet of 12-inch steel gas main in various parts of its system. In all, Sierra Pacific operates more than 1,900 miles of three-inch equivalent natural gas distribution piping, 56 miles of which were added in 2005.

The utility has added approximately 9,000 gas customers since the previous all-time record was set.

Sierra Pacific's natural gas distribution system receives gas supplies from two interstate natural gas pipelines.

Sierra Pacific Power Company, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sierra Pacific Resources (NYSE:SRP), is the electric utility serving most of northern Nevada and the Lake Tahoe area of California.  Sierra Pacific Power Company also distributes natural gas in the Reno-Sparks area of northern Nevada.  Sierra Pacific Resources is also the holding company for Nevada Power Company, serving most of southern Nevada.