Daily News

After a summer of internal debate, the Spanish government is about to introduce a 6% tax on all forms of power generation, as well as new taxes on nuclear and large-scale hydropower plants, in an effort to reduce the country's electricity tariff deficit which stands at a staggering €24bn (£31.3bn).

The United States is likely to stay the country with the lowest cost of power production worldwide as an abundance of shale gas production will put in a ceiling at about $4/MMBtu, Andy Weissman, energy adviser at Haynes and Boone forecast.

As Germany's power grid operators are busy negotiating with power plant operators over the amount of available cold reserves, the federal network regulator Bundesnetzagentur (BNA) confirmed that Germany will need over 2,000 MW of capacity reserve to guarantee supply security in during the upcoming winter.

Alstom has entered a 12-year long-term service agreement (LTSA) with Sembcorp Cogen Pte for its "Sembcorp Cogen Power Plant" in the Sakra district of Jurong Island in Singapore.

As Singapore's power generation capacity expands, an increasing number of gas turbines are getting registered with the National Electricity Market of Singapore (NEMS). "With the latest addition the total amount of CCGT capacity registered with NEMS now stands at 7,500 MW," said a representative at Singapore's Energy Market Company (EMC), the facilitator for traded wholesale electricity markets in the city-state.

Diesel and gas generators are experiencing a sales boom across Africa and Asia as they step in to backfill unforeseen power shortages in developing countries, according to findings in GlobalData's report 'Diesel and Gas Generator, 2012'.

Kawasaki Heavy Industries (KHI) has completed of the development of a new 30 MW gas turbine – the Kawasaki L30A. Start-up of the first L30A package, installed at a plant in Japan, is due this October.

RWE npower has officially opened the fifth and final unit at the 2,000-megawatt Pembroke combined cycle gas turbine (CCGT) following investment of £1bn by operator RWE to build one of Europe's largest and most efficient power plants.

Siemens has won a $300 million order for the turnkey supply of the Panda Sherman Power Project in Sherman, Texas, in consortium with Bechtel. Construction works are scheduled to be completed by the end of 2014.

The volatility of gas prices in Europe is forecast to rise as utilities in the U.K., Germany and Spain need more flexible gas supply for dispatching power plants at short notice to counterbalance the growing share of intermittent power supply from renewables.

"We envisage gas demand from the power sector to increase across most European countries, with Great Britain set to become a wind and gas dominated system by 2030, following the closure of most coal plants," James Cox, Principal Consultant at Pöyry told Gas to Power Journal.

The outcome of the US presidential election in November is expected to have merely a limited effect on global energy markets, two Washington-based consultancies found independently.

South Korea's ministry of Ministry of Knowledge Economy (MKE) will establish a master plan for shale gas development before the end of the year as it aims for shale gas-derived LNG imports to account for 20% of the country's LNG import capacity, a ministry official told 'Gas to Power Journal'.

Despite short term restraints in the market for gas-fired power generation, Frost & Sullivan's Energy Industry Director, Harald Thaler sees "sound medium- and long-term prospects" for the industry and forecasts global gas-fired power plant orders will total 537 GW through 2020.

Progress Energy Carolinas, a subsidiary of Duke Energy, has retired the coal-fired H.F. Lee power plant on September 15 as part of the utility's fleet modernisation programme. The gap in power supply will be filled by a new 920-MW gas-fired plant, scheduled to start commercial operations in early 2013.

The First Vice President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), Varel Freeman, has completed a visit to Jordan to consider a $100 million investment in a power plant near Amman to help increase the electricity supply in the Arab country.

News in Brief

Finning offers new Cat engine

June 20 – The new Cat C9.3B industrial engine, compliant with EU Stage V emissions standards, is now available from Finning UK and Ireland. The six cylinder, 9.3 litre engine builds on capabilities of previous Cat models that have logged more than 200 million operating hours.

GE risks €35m fine in France

June 19 – French government officials said GE will have to pay penalties if it fails to realise its pledge to create 1,000 jobs in France by the end of this year. GE made the promise in 2014 as part of the €12.4 billion takeover of Alstom’s power generation and grid business. "The contract called for a 50,000 euro penalty for every job not created," France’s labour minister Muriel Penicaud told BFM television.

MAN to deliver engines to Oman LNG

June 18 – Oman LNG is seeking to develop a new gas engine-driven power plant at its Qalhat facilities. MAN Diesel and Turbo will deliver the gas engines and associated equipment, while KBR will manage the project execution, supply the generators and ensure safety requirements.

CHP market to top $27bn by 2023

June 15 – Global market for combined heat and power is estimated to grow at an annual rate of 5.48% to reach $20.69 billion in 2018 and $27.01 billion by 2023. According to Markets and Markets, the main growth drivers are demand for energy efficiency and government incentives and programs to promote CHP.

Enel starts battery storage in the UK

June 14 – Enel Group’s first utility-scale, stand-alone battery energy storage - the 25 MW/12.5 MWh Tynemouth project - is about to start operations, supported by a four-year contract with British System Operator National Grid to provide grid-balancing services. Enel bought the storage venture from Element Power in May 2017, and invested about 20 million Euros in the overall project, including construction.

New Mach Gen files for bankruptcy

June 13 – U.S. power generator New Mach Gen has filed for bankruptcy, presenting a pre-packaged reorganisation plan. New Mach Gen operates three gas-fired power plants with a combined capacity of 2,500 MW in Athens, NY, Maricopa County, Arizona and Charlton, Massachusetts.

Siemens, Covestro partner on digitalization

June 12 – Siemens and Covestro Deutschland have agreed a Joint Business Development Plan that reinforces their longstanding, trust-based partnership in the field of digitalization. Siemens is developing predictive process data models for manufacturing through the use of its cloud-based IoT operating system, MindSphere, while Covestro will introduce its process technology and production expertise to generate joint marketing solutions.

U.S. hurricane season underway

June 11 – With June 1 marking the official start of the 2018 hurricane season in the United States, Dominion Energy has urged customers to prepare and emergency storm kit. The Virginia-based utility is continuing day-to-day preparations for a busy storm season.

EIA broadens energy survey

June 8 – For electricity, the number of end-uses estimated in the EIA’s Residential Energy Consumption Survey (RECS) has expanded from 4 to 26 by adding estimates for various types of equipment. Itemized estimates collectively cover 87% of residential electricity use.

Cost-effective transition towards CHP

June 7 – COGEN Europe, an industry lobby group, has underlined the sector’s commitment to a “cost-effective transition towards a sustainable future in Europe” by means of utilizing combined heat and power generation. CHP provides flexibility across heat, electricity and gas networks and sectors by relying on short, medium and long-term storage to balance energy supply and demand.

Europe’s largest battery operational

June 6 – With a capacity of 48 MW/50 MWh, Europe’s largest battery EnspireME has been in operation since the beginning of this month. Located in Jardelund, northern Germany, the battery will be used as a backup by the local grid operator and participate in the weekly auction of primary reserve capacity. It was built by the Dutch utility Eneco and Japan's Mitsubishi in eight months.

BlueVault powers offshore operations

June 5 – Siemens is applying its electrification experience in the marine industry to offshore oil and gas, focussing on reducing emissions and risk in harsh operational environments. BlueVault, Siemens’ advanced lithium-ion battery-based solution, is suited for both all-electric and hybrid energy-storage applications.

Duke Energy opens new CCGT unit at Lee Station

June 4 – U.S. utility Duke Energy has been continuously operating its new 750 MW combined-cycle gas power unit at the W.S. Lee Station in Anderson County, South Carolina, since the beginning of June. Construction of the $700 million gas power unit started in March 2015, creating more than 600 construction jobs. Now fully operational, the CCGT is expected to generate about $4.4 million in tax revenue for Anderson County in 2019.

Reliability risk in California, Texas

June 1 – California and Texas are two potential tight spots for reliability of electricity this summer, even as most regions seem prepared to meet peak summer demand, the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) notes. In its 2018 energy market and reliability assessment, the regulator predicts warmer than average temperatures which could stir record high gas-burn for power generation.

Siemens to roll-out energy monitoring system at Rexel

May 31 – Electrical wholesaler Rexel Austria has placed an order with Siemens to deliver a cloud-based energy monitoring system which is meant to achieve a 15% reduction in energy use at its logistics center in Weisskirchen. Siemens’ cope of supply includes 66 communication-capable 7KM PAC 1500 and 7KM PAC 4200 power measuring devices, powermanager energy monitoring software, and connection to its cloud-based operating system MindSphere.

MHI calls off tie-up with JTEKT

May 30 – Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) has discontinued talks to form a business partnership with JTEKT Corp after both parties terminated a basic partnership, agreed in December 2017 together with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Machine Tool (MAT) that included capital participation in JTEKT. All these plans have now been abandoned.

Sembcorp hires Contact Energy CFO

May 29 – Singapore-based Sembcorp has hired Contact Energy CFO Graham Cockroft to be its new CFO as of September 3, 2018. Sembcorp’s current CFO, Koh Chiap Khiong has moved on to head of the group’s utilities business in Singapore, Southeast Asia and China.