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Energy and Environment
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CARBONDALE WEATHER

Ameren Readies for Polar Vortex

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Courtesy of Ameren Illinois.
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Todd Kuhl, a natural gas storage field operator, Ameren Illinois, inspects the pressure levels of the instrumentation on a natural gas compressor during gas injection operations to ensure safe and reliable operations.

With the coldest temperatures of the year heading our way later this week, Eric Kozak with Ameren Illinois says  the utility has access to 12 storage fields throughout the state capable of holding natural gas in case demand spikes.

"These are rock formations, they're from depleted oil and gas fields and we can use those to store natural gas."

Collectively the 12 fields can hold 24 billion cubic feet of natural gas, which can protect customers against price hikes during high demand.

"It allows us to buy the gas cheaper in the summer, and that way when we're pulling out in the winter we can still provide it to our customers are lower cost."

In southern Illinois,  gas storage fields are located in Centralia and Johnston City and can be anywhere from 300 feet below the surface to three-thousand feet deep.