Utilization of UK gas-fired capacity averaged close to 14GW in February, down from 17.8GW in January, with its role in the generation mix falling from 45% to 38% - largely due to higher wind, especially in the second half of the month, along with a recovery in French imports.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is withdrawing its request that owners and operators in the oil and natural gas industry provide information on equipment and emissions at existing oil and gas operations. The withdrawal is effective immediately, meaning owners and operators, including those who have received an extension to their due dates for providing the information, are no longer required to respond.
Work is beginning on the installation of a new 370MW combined cycle gas turbine (CCGT) and major refurbishment works at Centrica’s Kings Lynn power station in Norfolk, England. The plant is one of several new Centrica projects, totalling 500MW that won 15 year Capacity Agreements with National Grid to supply power during peak periods from October 2020.
Wintershall, Germany’s biggest crude oil and natural gas producer, has abandoned plans to carry out further scientific research into shale gas in the “Rheinland” and “Ruhr” approved fields in the German province of North Rhine-Westphalia.
Tokyo Electric (Tepco) and Chubu Electric have decided to fully integrate their thermal power operations within two to three years. The operations, which account for half of Japan’s total thermal power capacity, will be brought together under the auspices of Jera Co. - a thermal power and fuel company jointly set up in 2015.
German gas production fell by 8.1% to 7.9 bcm in 2016, down from 8.6 bcm in 2015, according to industry association BVEG, which released the figures on March 2nd. German gas producers have been trying to maintain production, but face dwindling conventional reserves.
UK gas and power regulator, Ofgem, is proposing to cut the embedded subsidies enjoyed by smaller distributed generators, down from the current level of around £45/kW – double the clearing price for the 2016 Capacity Market auction – to just £2/kW. The changes could come as a blow to many smaller gas fired plants, which make up a significant share of such generators.
The US maintained record levels of liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports in February, with a total of 15 cargoes headed overseas, according to the US Energy Information Administration (EIA). The number follows on from record high levels in the previous two months.
Last week finally saw an agreement between European Union national governments on the future of the Emission Trading System (ETS) carbon market, after talks that lasted 18 months. The deal could be bullish for gas demand, with the number of carbon credits constrained as the 2020s progress, adding to the cost of coal fired power generation, and making gas – which emits less than half the CO2 of coal – more attractive.
BP has brought into the biogas sector, snapping up Clean Energy Fuels Corp's biomethane production assets for $155 million on March 1st. The move further expands its gas supply portfolio in the US and reflects a strategic shift toward less carbon-intensive projects.
BP said in a strategy update on Feb 28th that it was exploring new investments in low-carbon forms of energy, a part of the industry in which it sees significant future business potential.
ABB has successfully commissioned Denmark’s first urban energy storage system. The Lithion-ion based battery energy storage system (BESS) will be integrated with the local electricity grid in the new harbour district of Nordhavn, Copenhagen.
German chancellor Angela Merkel and Egyptian president Abdel Fattah El-Sisi have symbolically inaugurated the first phase of Siemens' Megaproject in Egypt on March 2.
“The event marks an important milestone towards the completion of the project, which will boost the country's power generation capacity by 45% when finished” Siemens said.