Daily News

NorthWestern Energy has contracted Caterpillar to supply six Cat G20CM34 gas gensets to replace combustion turbines currently operating at the Huron Generating Station in South Dakota. Construction activities will begin in July, with a view to starting commercial operation at the end of 2021.

Saudi Electricity Company (SEC) has awarded 5 stars to the Waad Al Shamal integrated solar and combined cycle power plant (ISCC) project for environment, health and safety standards. The plant consists of 50 MW solar plus 1,000 MW thermal capacity (four GE 7F gas turbines) and is due to enter service this fall.

Drax Group and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Engineering, part of MHI, have agreed to implement a bioenergy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) pilot project at Drax Power Station starting from this autumn. The 12-month pilot will capture 300kg of CO2 a day, running on biomass flue gases.

Energy demand in the UK has started to recover from a 15-20% plunge, incurred by coronavirus lockdowns. According to Cornwall Insight, transmission system electricity demand rose to just below 0.64 TWh on Friday, June 19, but is still below the 0.70 TWh recorded in 2019 on similar days in late June. 

On-site power provider Cummins has entered a joint venture with the German startup NPROXX, focussed on hydrogen storage tanks and transportation. The JV is aimed at deepening Cummins’ capabilities in fuel cell and hydrogen production technologies.

GE has completed the first major inspection project in China since the coronavirus outbreak. Modernisation of two 9E.03 turbines at the 360 MW Baochang power plant, Guangdong province, was delivered safe and ahead of schedule on behalf of Shenzhen Baochang Power Supply Company.

Toshiba Energy Systems & Solutions (EES) has started to relocate its hydrogen production site from Yokohama to Kawasaki city in order to increase capacity and output. At the new facility, due completed in autumn 2020, Toshiba will produce fuel cell stacks based on its H2One energy supply system and its H2Rex hydrogen fuel cell.

Myanmar has become the newest LNG importing country when a cargo from Malaysia was delivered to a temporary jetty at Thilawa port on June 6. A second Malay cargo is now on route, headed to a larger jetty that will be able to accommodate regular-sized FSU vessels starting from July.

Though travel restrictions are still in place in the Dominican Republic to contain the coronavirus, Siemens is striving to deliver a barge-mounted power plant, based on SGT-800 gas turbine, on time and on budget. The 145 MW Estrella del Mar III is due to start operations by spring 2021.

Falling gas prices have substantially improved the economics of coal-to-gas switching, the International Energy Agency (IEA) finds. Still, nearly 130 Gigawatts (GW) of coal-fired capacity was under construction at the start of 2020, and a further 500 GW in a planning phase but may now be at risk.

National Grid has secured the first multi export credit agency (ECA) covered loan for the Viking Link, a 1,400 MW subsea power cable between the UK and Denmark. The $743 million financing package is made up of $488 million from SACE Export Credit and $255 million from Euler Hermes.

Imports of Canadian pipeline gas to the western United States have fallen substantially as spot prices at the NOVA/AECO-C (AECO) trading hub in Alberta reached near parity with Henry Hub. In April and May, imports fell to an average of 6.2 billion cubic feet per day (Bcf/d), according to Genscape pipeline flow estimates.

News in Brief

Supercapcitors to replace batteries

Sept 25 – The global market for supercapacitors was valued at over $487 million last year and is forecast to top $1,570 millio by 2025, growing at an annual rate of 21.8%. Supercapacitor, an emerging technology for energy storage systems, can offer higher power density than batteries was may soon replace the latter.

Atos, Siemens expand digital partnership

Sept 24 – Atos, a global leader in digital transformation, has expanded its strategic partnership with Siemens AG for five years, helping the latter with data driven digital, cloud transformation and cybersecurity. The extension comes in the context of 5-year total €3 billion agreements which were separately signed with Siemens AG, Siemens Energy and Siemens Healthineers.

Rotterdam Port to store CO2 beneath the North Sea

Sept 23 – The Porthos project, a joint venture between the Port of Rotterdam Authority, Gasunie and EBN, seeks to transport CO2 from industry in the port to empty gas fields beneath the North Sea. In its early years, the Carbon Capture Utilisation and Storage (CCUS) will be able to store approximately 2.5 million tonnes of CO2 per year with plans to be operational by 2024.

German power sector to reach net zero in 2040s

Sept 22 – Revisions to Germany’s Renewable Energy Act (EEG) stipulate the power sector should become greenhouse-gas neutral in the early 2040s. Despite the gradual electrification of heating and transport, the German energy ministry is so far sticking to its estimate of 580 terawatt-hours (TWh) of power consumption in 2030 – close to current levels.

B&W to supply superheaters to Lumiant

Sept 21 – Babcock & Wilcox’s thermal segment has been contracted to design, manufacture and supply new superheater components for a high-efficiency boiler at Luminant’s Oak Grove Power Plant near Franklin, Texas. Material delivery to Oak Grove is scheduled for February 2021.

EC targets 55% emission cut by 2030

Sept 17 – The European Commission’s latest 2030 Target Plan stipulates a 55% cut in emissions by 2030, compared to 1990-levels. The lobby group COGEN Europe stressed the importance of combined heat and power generation (CHP) to reach that goal, calling for more stable policies and supportive regulation.

Rolls-Royce may sell ITP Areo

Sept 17 – Britain’s prime manufacturer Rolls-Royce confirmed it is looking to strengthen its balance sheet, possibly by disposing of ITP Aero which his hoped to generate proceeds of more than £2bn over the next 18 months. Further cost cutting is meant to deliver £1 billion and revamping of the company’s Civil Areospace business should save another £1.3 billion.

China’s GDP may grow 1.8%

Sept 16 – China’s GDP is forecast to grow 1.8% this year as the economy recovers from the Covid-19 pandemic. The government slashed electricity tariffs to support manufacturing but the Asian Development Bank (ADB) warns of mounting credit risk for banks. Fiscal revenue pressure also intensifies as 1.5% of China’s GDP growth in the first half of 2020 was based on bond-funded investment by local governments.

Zeebrugge goes for green hydrogen

Sept 15 – Colruyt Group (Eoly), Parkwind and Fluxys aim to spend up to 35 million Euros to develop a green hydrogen plant in Zeebrugge, Belgium, by 2023. The plan is to convert off-shore wind energy into green hydrogen which can then be injected in the high-pressure natural gas transmission grid.

Shale gas market to top $41bn

Sept 14 – Global markets for unconventional gas, mostly developed by shale fracking, is forecast to grow at an annual rate of 7% to reach $ 41.76 billion by 2024. According to Technavio, the Americas region will remain dominant with an 87% market share as hydraulic fracturing technologies evolve. Top players in the market are BP, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, Exxon Mobil, PetroChina, Gazprom, Shell, Santos, Saudi Arabian Oil Co., and YPF.

SNAM, Saipem join forces on hydrogen

Sept 11 – Two Italian energy companies, SNAM and Saipem, have agreed to develop initiatives for green hydrogen production and transport, as well as for carbon dioxide capture, transport and reuse or storage (CCRS). The move supports the European Commission’s Hydrogen Strategy to reach net-zero emissions by 2050.

MAN, Wasco to drive Power-to-Gas Tech in Asia

Sept 10 – MAN Energy Solutions and Wasco have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to promote and commercialize Power-to-X (PtX) projects in South-East Asia. The technology in question converts electricity into carbon-neutral synthetic fuels, gas or liquid, for use as a clean, carbon-neutral energy source.

Romgaz, GSP to realise 200 MW gas and solar project

Sept 9 – Romania’s state gas company Romgaz has agreed to build 200 MW power generation capacity with the privately-owned Grup Servicii Petroliere (GSP) which is controlled by the local businessman Gabriel Comanescu. The project entails a 150 MW gas-fired power plant and a 50 MW solar photovoltaic park, to be built on the site of a disused coal power plant in southern Romania.

Alaska uses twice as much energy for transport as NY

Sept 8 – More energy is used per person for transportation in U.S. states with low population density. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s (EIA), people in geographically large states with small populations, such as Alaska, Wyoming and North Dakota, are useing twice as much energy for transportation than the U.S. average on a per capita basis. That’s in stark contrast to states with higher population density, such as Rhode Island and New York.

Hydrogen Council launched in Kobe/Kansai area

Sept 7 – Mitsubishi Power, part of MHI, and various Japanese energy companies have set up the so-called ‘Kobe/Kansai Hydrogen Utilization Council’ to develop new utilization methods and establish a regional hydrogen supply chain. The aim is to help Japan shift to a carbon-free, hydrogen-powered society by 2030.

B&W sets up Asia-Pacific HQ in Perth

Sept 4 – Babcock & Wilcox (B&W) has setup new Asia-Pacific headquarters in Perth, Australia, and named Nick Carter as managing director of the region. Headquartered in Akron, Ohio, the engineering company is also establishing or expanding operations in Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand, China and India.

Germany boosts RES targets

Sept 3 – Striving to meet 2030 emission targets, the Germany government is increasing its renewable energy targets while adjusting the grid to accommodate a greater influx of fluctuating power supply. The draft reform of the Renewable Energy Act (EEG) stipulates raising the solar photovoltaic capacity to 100 GW (up from 52 GW today), onshore wind capacity to 71 GW (from 55 GW), offshore wind to 20 GW and biomass to 8.4 GW.

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