Nigeria’s Azura-Edo IPP, a 450 MW open-cycle power plant, is on track to be completed on time. However, investors are concerned about reaping a return: Ecobank warned that “an apparent inability to collect money from Discoms [power distribution companies],” and reluctance of some end-customers to pay electricity, risks to distort project finance.
Decentralisation, decarbonisation and electrification of vehicles are unravelling the way electricity is generated, consumed and accessed. In the view of Shayle Kann, head of GTM Reserach, “this could be the most dramatic transformation of electricity for a century.”
Energy Capital Partners, and an investor consortium, have agreed to buy the U.S. power generator Calpine for $5.6 billion, after the transaction value was established through an “exhaustive review of strategic alternatives,” undertaken by the Calpine board.
Heat rates of gas-fired power plants in the U.S., and notably of combined-cycle units, have decreased 7% between 2006 and 2015 – indicating more efficient generation, because less fuel is needed per kilowatthour. In contrast, heat rates of coal power plants remained stable, according to EIA data, showing no improvement.
DILO, a German manufacturer of sulfur hexafluoride (SF6) gas handling equipment, has launched a SF6 multi-analyser that allows users to simultaneously check three key gas quality parameters- SF6 concentration, humidity and quantity of decomposition products. SF6 quality of gas insulated equipment needs be checked to determine if the gas still complies with the IEC Standard 60480 (SF6 reuse) or whether it needs purification.
KAR Group in Iraq has extended Siemens’ service agreement to provide operations and maintenance (O&M) for two newly added units at the Khormala gas power plant in Kurdistan. The 930 MW plant covers nearly 30% of the region’s electricity demand and supplies more three million people with reliable electricity.
Taiwan’s recent massive blackout raises questions of the government’s wider energy policy which, according to Dr. Guo Yu, principal Asia analyst at Maplecroft, “does not pose an immediate threat to government stability.” However, it may determine the political fortunes of President Tsai and the ruling Democratic Progressive Party as we approach the next election cycle in 2020.
A massive blackout recently revealed the fragility of Taiwan’s power grid, and prompted the resignation of Chen Chin-te, chairman of Taiwanese gas supplier CPC Corp. Now, the Ministry of Science is considering the launch of a power storage system from Tesla.
SoCal’s inability this summer to fully utilize Aliso Canyon, California’s largest storage with a capacity of 86 Bcf, is impacting flow, pricing and storage dynamics in the U.S. Pacific Region. Peak summer demand conjured up fierce competition for gas between Northern and Southern California which let to tighter price spreads between the two regional gas trading hubs, SoCal and PG&E, this August.
Bangladesh’s Summit Group has contracted Wärtsilä to supply equipment for a power plant with a capacity of 300 MW. Located in Gazipur, the plant will run on eighteen Wärtsilä 46 engines, operating on heavy fuel oil, and possibly gas at a later stage. Start-up of the fast-track project is envisaged for March 2018.
The re-balancing of global oil markets is viewed by the IEA as “a stubborn process” given that some producers, party to the OPEC’s output cut agreement, are "showing signs of weakening their resolve." The compliance rate fell again in July to a new low of 75% from June’s 77%. Still, IEA analysts believe “the market is re-balancing” as the price of Brent crude recently stabilised above $50/bbl.
Two offshore projects by China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) – the Penglai 19-3 oil field and the Dongfang 13-2 gas field – will be powered by Dresser-Rand equipment. The business, now part of Siemens Power and Gas, won orders from CNOOC and from Harbin Guanghan Gas Turbine (HGGT).
Dirty king coal is still on track to surpass natural gas generation for 2017, with total shares of almost 32 % and 31%, respectively, the latest short-term energy outlook from the Energy Information Administration (EIA) shows. That near-tie comes after natural gas generated 34% of the nation’s electricity needs in 2016, with coal finishing at 30%.
Turning his back on former President Obama’s clean energy aspirations, the new FERC chairman Neil Chatterjee calls for coal to be “properly compensated” for baseload power and “recognized as an essential part of the fuel mix.” Asserting his commitment to the “resilience and reliability” of the US electric system, he said in a podcast released by FERC this week that ensuring security of supply would merit keeping even uneconomic coal and nuclear power plants operational. “These are essential to national security,” he claimed.
To restore deteriorating output, La Paloma Generating Company (LPGC) considered an upgrade of turbine components, but found a cheaper way: "After doing a net present value analysis of the money we would have to invest and how much power we would recover, fogging turned to be really, really good in terms of dollars per kW," said Pablo Cortes Oseguera, LPGC engineering and maintenance manager. "It made a lot of sense to our owners."