In the aftermath of a month-long leak at SoCalGas’ storage, California is taking urgent measures to cap the gas use in the power sector. Looking ahead to the autumn and winter season, the State Energy Commission, CPUC and the California ISO evaluate the option of importing LNG.
An option to purchase 300 acres of land in Berry Hill Industrial Park allows Southern Power to invest around $250 million in realising a combined-cycle power plant in Pittsylvania County, Virginia. The site has easy access to the Williams Transco intercontinental gas pipeline.
Following intensive R&D, Siemens exhibits high voltage interrupters and gas-insulated switchgear using vacuum technology and so-called clean-air technology up to a voltage of 145 kV for the first time ever at this year's Cigré in Paris. The launch of the new outdoor circuit-breaker 3AV1 and 8VN1 Blue GIS is scheduled in 2018.
South Korea’s sole gas importer Kogas is taking steps to source LNG at cheaper prices through its proprietary gas production. "We need to shift away from a conventional supply method of bringing LNG under high-priced long-term contracts from overseas,” CEO Lee Seung-hoon stressed.
CNPC has decided to step up investment in gas upstream as it seeks to nearly double its gas output to 180 Bcm/y by 2020. Hou Qijun, head of CNPC’s planning department, announced the gas proportion of CNPC's budget will continue to rise; he stressed the cleaner-burning fuel is "our top priority with high potential for profit growth."
Affordable storage is seen as the missing link between intermittent renewable power and reliable energy supply. McKinsey research anticipates costs could fall to $200 per kWh in 2020 – half of today’s price, which would help transform the energy mix of many nations. By 2025, costs of power storage are expected to fall to $160 kWh or less, making it affordable to use for utilities and grid operators.
The government of Gibraltar and Royal Dutch Shell have signed an agreement for the construction of a small FSRU that will receive LNG delivered by Shell for use in an adjacent gas-fired power plant, which is already being built.
Ivory Coast, Ghana and South Africa are tipped to become front-runners in setting up integrated LNG-to-power projects. Developers can arrange attractive import terms as a glut of new gas supply is entering global markets while demand from key Asian buyers remains subdued.
India’s state-run North Eastern Electric Power Corporation (Neepco) has been forced to delay and downscale its combined-cycle gas power project at Monarchak after ONGC more than halved gas supply. This meant that the 500 MW project could only be realized based on a 65.42 MW gas turbine and 36.25 MW steam turbine – ready to start as and when there'll be fuel.
Plans for several LNG-fuelled power plants in Chile have been shelved after none of the projects won contracts at the country’s latest electricity tender. A series of wind and solar power projects secured more than half of the contracts at auction.
Even though natural gas is less carbon-intensive than coal, the overall rise in gas-burn in the power sector – amid competitive fuel economics – has made related pollution levels surpass those of coal. The EIA expects emissions from gas will be 10% greater than those from coal over the course of 2016.
Advanced Power has struck a financing deal with BlackRock’s Alternative Solutions Group, who committed to shoulder 10% of the investment of the 1,000 MW Cricket Valley combined-cycle gas power plant. Construction of the CCGT is slated to start in Q4-2016.
Santos, Australia’s third largest gas producer, has spent billions to realise an LNG export project – but now it is struggling to pump enough gas and has to purchase expensive local supplies to feed its Gladstone LNG facility. Power producers down under, meanwhile are facing fuel shortages and call for restrictions on gas exports.
Charlotte-based Duke Energy plans to retrofit its two Cliffside coal power plants to enable them to also burn natural gas. If successful and cost-efficient, the utility will also make similar modification at most of its remaining coal-fired plant fleet by spring 2019.
Shougang Jingtang Iron & Steel Co. of China has awarded an order to Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems (MHPS) to deliver one train of blast-furnace-gas (BFG) fired gas turbine equipment for a CCGT that Shougang Jingtang plans to build in Hebei Province.