Like it or not — if you are a natural gas and/or electricity end-user, you participate in a highly uncertain, volatile, complex market, fraught with great risks and great opportunities. Large and sudden price fluctuations occur quite often; unforeseen and abnormal weather patterns in different regions of the US are facts of life, and events far away from the US often have an immediate impact on energy prices. Such factors create a great deal of uncertainty and increase risks of making wrong — and costly — decisions regarding energy procurement.
While it is impossible to entirely eliminate risk, it is possible to manage and even benefit from it. What is needed is a thorough examination of all available options and a carefully crafted, customized, flexible strategy for energy procurement. That strategy may be different for natural gas than for electricity, and will vary from one region to another and from one type of a building to another.
A major element of this strategy is Dollar Cost Averaging (or don’t put all your eggs in one basket), achieved through a carefully planned, flexible, responsive, long-term series of purchases in various layers of energy. Such a strategy provides the needed flexibility to take advantage of market opportunities whenever they present themselves.