Daily News

With a 7.9 GW of America’s coal capacity due to retire, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) expects coal stockpile will decline through 2018 and remain low through 2019. This May, coal inventories, or stockpiles, in the electric power sector totaled 128 million short tons (MMst), 34 MMst or 21% lower than in the previous May – the lowest level for four years.

The Finish technology group Wärtsilä has delivered its first engine plus storage hybrid installation worldwide to Sinergy, part of ALTEO Group, in the Hungarian capital Budapest. The upgraded plant, running on three W34SG engines, was commissioned earlier this week and has a total output of 6 MW / 4 MWh.

Increasing the deployment of “volatile” renewable energies in Europe threatens power supply security across the continent, analysis the German Association of Energy and Water Industries (BDEW) shows. Surplus volume of secure power generation capacity will decline in the medium to long term throughout Europe.

Rebuking the Trump administration’s plan to roll back the Obama-era Clean Power Plan, California’s Gov. Jerry Brown called the proposal a "a declaration of war against America and all of humanity." Trump’s EPA new proposal gives states more freedom to set their own emissions standards at plants - a barely disguised favour for the coal industry.

More than two thirds of British people polled by YouGov would like to see a more decentralised, local model succeed the Big Six’s current monopoly. Three-quarters say they are prepared to join community energy schemes and many want their pension or banking investments to avoid fossil fuel projects.

Sembcorp Industries’ Gayatri power plant in India has won a tender, conducted by the Bangladesh Power Development Board (BPDB), to supply 250 MW of electricity to Bangladesh for 15 years. In a letter of intent BPDB stipulates the additional supply to Bangladesh upon completion of procedural requirements and government approvals. The plan is to add another unit to the Gayatri complex.

AES Colón – a $1.15 billion LNG import terminal and adjacent combined-cycle power plant – has just been inaugurated in Panama. The project comprises the first LNG regas terminal in Central America and a CCGT with 381 MW capacity. Start of commercial operation is slated for September 1.

Smart electrically-driven heating is a “valuable field in which to invest”, Delta-ee research finds, pointing at the substantial installed base of electrically-driven heating – 30 million units across Europe. In the UK, new business models are emerging providing heat-as-a-service, with the customer avoiding the need for buying fuel and appliances by simply buying the heat, and comfort that comes with it.

Agile, more efficient testing and product development for the marine, oil & gas and new energy sector will be facilitated at Wärtsilä’s new technology hub on Vaskiluoto island, near the Finish city of Vaasa. Wärtsilä will invest €83 million in modern testing and production technology for the hub, while total investment will amount to over €200 million.

Hazards of oversupply in oil and natural gas are preoccupying International Oil Companies (IOCs) as less carbon-intensive sources of energy compound the risk of future oil and gas oversupply. Still, Moody's analysts are convinced oil majors will tackle these new issues through a triad of conservative financial policies to strengthen balance sheets, capital discipline, and robust long-term planning that anticipates secular shifts – like the global trend towards renewables and energy storage.

Energy consumption per capita in Africa is forecast to rise up to 25% by 2040, but the African value is still projected to be one-half of the level in India, one-fourth of the level in Brazil, according to the International Energy Outlook 2018. The net effect of the IEO2018 Africa High Growth case on the rest of the world, because of trade and global supply chains, shows limited impacts on other countries in terms of output.

Analysts reckon Germany could still meet its 40% greenhouse gas reduction target by 2020, if several lignite-fired power plants are shut-down immediately and others curtailed in use, a study by the Fraunhofer Institute shows. “The technical possibilities aren’t lacking – only the political will,” commented Greenpeace energy expert, Anike Peters.

Nearly two-thirds of oil and gas sector leaders, surveyed by the Norwegian classification society DNV GL, have increased spending on gas projects in 2018; hence natural gas is expected to overtake oil as the world’s primary energy source in the mid-2030s. Thereafter, the energy transition will enter its final phase-out of fossil fuels, with hydrogen and renewables set to gain momentum. 

Aggreko, a provider of temporary power solutions, has contracted GE Distributed Power to connect up to 10,000 assets to GE’s myPlant asset performance management solution over the next five years. The project will be implemented across Aggreko’s power generation fleet, with the first site deployment planned in Q4-2018.

In Australia, MAN Energy Solutions is gearing up to participate in a growing market with the opening of a new site in Yennora, part of Greater Western Sydney. The new workshop features a revamped 2 MW engine test cell with improved acoustic attenuation and a crane capacity of up to 25 tons and 35 metres span.

News in Brief

Aramco collaborates with Schneider Electric

Sept 21 – Saudi Aramco has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Schneider Electric to work together on various advanced digital technologies, including virtual reality. The MoU is one of several accords to support the Aramco’s 2020 Transformation Programme and the kingdom’s own Vision 2030 economic blueprint.

GE appoints new CCO

Sept 20 – Jennifer Erickson has been named Chief Communications Officer (CCO) for General Electric with immediate effect. Erickson will report to Linda Boff, Chief Marketing & Learning Officer, GE who called her “hard work, superb instincts and team leadership” as a great asset to help transform GE for the future.

ENGIE rated “industry leader” in DJSI

Sept 20 – ENGIE has been rated “industry leader” in its sector in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) World and Europe indices in 2018. In the area Multi and Water Utilities it achieved a score of 82 out of 100.

Fuel cell CHP market keeps growing at +24%

Sept 19 – The global market for fuel cell for combined heat and power (CHP) applications is forecast to grow at an annual rate of over 24% through 2022. Fuels cells are considered a clean source of energy that is highly expandable and can be used in a variety of applications. Top manufacturers include: Bloom Energy, FuelCell Energy, Viessmann, Baxi, Ceres Power, Doosan Fuel Cell and Toshiba.

Siemens Gamesa stays in DJ Sustainability Index

Sept 18 – For the ninth time running, Siemens Gamesa has been confirmed as member of the Dow Jones Sustainability World Indices (DJSI World). The Spanish company scored particularly well in the areas of codes of business conduct, supply chain management, operational eco-efficiency and product stewardship.

Oldest U.S. power plant retires

Sept 17 - The Oyster Creek Nuclear Generating Station, a 625 MW single-unit GE boiling water reactor in New Jersey, will retire today. The plant, situated 50 miles east of Philadelphia, first came online in December 1969 and is the oldest commercially operated nuclear power plant in the United States.

Power of Siberia 93% complete

Sept 14 – Gazprom CEO Alexey Miller has informed his Chinese counterpart at CNPC, Wang Yilin, that 93% or over 2,010 kilometers of the Power of Siberia pipeline’s linear part from the Chayandinskoye field to the border with China has been welded and laid. The submerged crossing under the Amur is also “nearly complete.”

Industry benefits of cheap Marcellus gas

Sept 13 – Commercial and industrial users in Pennsylvania have saved about $17.2 billion as a result of the low price of natural gas. Abundant production out of the Marcellus Shale and helped push the price down from $10.39 per thousand cubic feet in 2008 to currently below $3, and occasionally lower.

DNV GL opens digital hub in Singapore

Sept 12 – Driving digitalization across the oil & gas, maritime and energy sectors, DNV GL has launched a new digital hub in Singapore. Named Digital Consulting and Smart Cities, the new hub includes three teams covering smart cities, cybersecurity and digital development – all based on DNV GL’s data management platform Veracity.

Siemens launches floating power barge

Sept 11 – Siemens has developed barge-based, turnkey floating power solution that takes a critical part of an FLNG facility off a project’s critical path. According to the manufacturer, the integrated turnkey solution helps reduce overall project execution time by 25% or more.

ENGIE, Maltem found Blockchain Studio

Sept 10 –The French utility ENGIE and Maltem, an advisory on digitalization, have jointly founded a Blockchain Studio to make this technology more accessible to energy companies. An initial €1,9 million in seed funding has been secured, the companies said, which will be used to develop activities in southern Europe, and open an office in Singapore at the beginning o f 2019.

UPS for Dubrovnik Airport

Sept 7 – A new data center for Dubrovnik Airport in Croatia has been equipped with modular uninteruptible power supply (UPS). The solution ABB’s DPA UPScale ST 60 system CBAT-120 battery cabinets and the Rittal IT solutions.

FirstEnergy modernizes grid in Ohio

Sept 6 – FirstEnergy has started to rebuild and modernize an existing 69-kilovolt (kV) power line in its Ohio service area. The project is part of Energizing the Future, an investment initiative that has already led to a 37% reduction in equipment-related transmission outages across FirstEnergy ‘s power work in Ohio and the Penn Power territory in western Pennsylvania.

Wärtsilä supplies engines for 145-MW plant in Myanmar

Sept 5 – Wärtsilä gas engines have arrived at Ahlone port in Yangon, Myanmar, designated for a 145-MW power plant being built by Powergen Kyaukse Co. on behalf of Myanmar’s Ministry of Electricity and Energy. Powergen Kyaukse said it started civil works on site in preparation for installing the gas turbines. EPC contractor for the overall project is SEPCOIII Electric Power Construction of China.

Gas Turbine Control appoints new COO

Sept 4 – Gas Turbine Controls (GTC), supplier of replacement parts for all versions of GE power plant control systems particularly the Speedtronic series, has appointed John SantaCroce as new President and Chief Operating Officer (COO). John’s experience in finances, distribution and international sales is meant to benefit GTC clients through new products and service offerings

PennEnergy snaps up RexEnergy assets

Sept 3 – Pennsylvania-based gas producer PennEnergy has acquired nearly all assets of its former rival Rex Energy in a cash deal valued at an estimated US$600.5 million. Rex Energy recently filed for bankruptcy and had been primarily active in oil and gas exploration in the Appalachian Basin.

New GIS launched with 72.5kW

Aug 31 – GE Power’s Grid Solutions business has launched a new compact F35 Gas-Insulated Substation (GIS) for 72.5 kV networks. With a bay volume reduced by 23% and a 30% reduction in SF6 mass this new GIS allows the power voltage transformer to feed auxiliaries under “no wind” conditions, making it an ideal interface with a view to grid balancing.