Daily News

The British government today unveiled new clauses to its proposed energy bill, specifying plans to largely decarbonise the power generation sector by 2030 in a move set to herald investment in new gas-fired capacity.

Germany needs a "reformed market design" whereby secure power generation capacity should be rewarded and renewable energy must take responsibility for its impact, says Trianel CEO Sven Becker. Operations of fossil power plants are loss-making as wholesale power prices are at rock-bottom lows, he told a press briefing at the E-World energy conference in Essen today.

In a drive to replace small, ageing coal-fired power plants, Duke Energy has invested around $1.5 billion to build and commission two gas-fired plants in North Carolina, with a third plant worth $600 million due to start-up later this year.

Alstom, in consortium with Japan's Sumitomo Corp., has won an engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract by Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT) to supply equipment and build the 850-megawatt North Bangkok combined-cycle power plant block 2.

The Saudi energy company ACWA is venturing to invest in Turkey in partnership with Eser Holding to build a gas-fired combined-cycle power plant on a green field site in Kirikkale, central Anatolia. Realising the 800 MW plant project comes at a cost of up to US$ 930 million.

RWE expects compensation from Gazprom dating back until spring 2010 as part of an out-of-court settlement that would end a price arbitration case over gas import contract , its CEO told a German newspaper. "We expect that we will have an agreement in the first half of this year," RWE chief financial officer Bernhard Guenther told the German newspaper 'Boersen-Zeitung'. He revealed RWE expects Gazprom to pay compensation reaching as far back as spring 2010.

In the face of a global trend toward a green energy, efficient use of natural gas at peaking plants play a central role in ensuring security of electricity supply, says Dietmar Siersdorfer, chief executive, energy at Siemens Middle East. Peak-load gas turbines upgraded with Wet Compression technology can produce up to 15 percent more electricity output, he said, and take better advantage from high peak load electricity prices.

Hit by persistently low spark spreads, SSE has decided to halt operations at its ageing gas-fired combined cycle power stations at Keadby (760 MW) and Medway (688 MW) for a comprehensive maintenance programme aimed at enhancing the plants' operational flexibility from March 2013 onwards.

Shanghai's largest cogeneration facility, the Caojing plant will host GE's first Dry Low NOx (DLN) 2.6+ combustion system upgrade for an installed 9FA 3-series gas turbine in Asia. GE said the equipment for the first DLN 2.6+ upgrade will be shipped in October 2013, with schipment for the second upgrade due in January 2015.

Europe's ailing recovery and decreasing gas-to-power demand, in competition with coal and renewable energies, is forecast to put a lid on LNG demand for years to come, analysis from PIRA Energy Group shows.

Shell aims for a growing engine oils segment by launching a new sour-gas compatible lubricating oil. "There could be a 10% sales growth in the stationary gas engine oils segment this year," Richard Holdsworth, Global Brand Manager for Shell Power Lubricants told Gas to Power Journal.

E.on, Germany's biggest utility by revenues, is considering the part-closure of one of Europe's most modern gas-fired power stations in Irsching, Bavaria. Dr. Johannes Teyseen, E.on chief executive, said "the rapid growth of renewables has made gas-fired plants largely uneconomic to operate".

China's electricity production has surged more than 200% since 2000, spurring the nation's hunger for coal – the primary fuel for power generation. Coal consumption in China now accounts for 47% of global coal consumption – nearly as much as the entire rest of the world combined.

Ratnagiri Gas & Power Private Ltd (RGPPL) in India is limping back to producing electricity at its Dahbol power plant (1,967 MW) after being forced to shut down operations due to an acute shortage of gas to run the plant.

Tensaka Energy, an US-based power plant developer and energy marketer, has joined forces with the Brownsville Public Utilities Board (BPUB) to build an 800 MW gas-fired combined-cycle power station in Brownsville, Texas. "With increased scarcity pricing and decreased operating reserves in ERCOT [Electric Reliability Council of Texas], the project is well positioned for success," Tensaka Energy said.

News in Brief

Controversy about planned CCGT in California

Feb 22 – Environmentalist have filed a lawsuit against plans to build a 634 MW combined-cycle gas power plant in Palmdale, a city north of Los Angeles. The hybrid gas and solar plant had been approved by the California Energy Commission (CEC), although a developer has not been found yet.

GE installs and services 9E turbine in Iraq

Feb 21 – GE Power has delivered and installed a 9E gas turbine to Iraq’s Ministry of Electricity’s (MoE) Al Qudus power plant. Throughout 2019, GE will also service up to seven GE 9E gas turbines at the facility, helping to maintain a stable power output of up to 875 MW.

MHI to join Cybersecurity Charter

Feb 20 – Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) signed a letter of intent to join the Charter of Trust for cybersecurity by the end of September, expanding the charter’s reach into Asia. Initiated by Siemens, the charter calls for binding rules and standards on cybersecurity as digitalization advances. Other signatories include AES, Airbus, Allianz, Atos, Cisco, Daimler, Dell Technologies, Deutsche Telekom, Enel, IBM, NXP, SGS, Total and TÜV Süd.

Substation market grows at 9.4% rate

Feb 19 – The gas-insulated substation market, currently valued at $17.3 billion, is anticipated to grow at a rate of more than 9.4% in the years through to 2025. Analysts say rising demand for low maintenance and small power systems will boost the market, particularly for large infrastructure projects such as smart city where GIS substations are well-suited due to their high efficiency and compact size.

Amprion advances P2G project in Germany

Feb 18 – Amprion, together with Open Grid Europe (OGE), are striving to get a €150 million Power-to-Gas project in Germany into operation by 2023. The pilot plant includes a 100 MW electrolyser that converts renewable energy into hydrogen and methane for use in the district of Emsland, northern Germany.

MHPS leads on post F-class turbines

Feb 15 – Mitsubishi Hitachi Power System (MHPS) secured most orders in 2018 for newest-generation turbines, while GE booked most order for turbines of all classes amongst its rivals. For so-called post F-class turbines, MHPS reportedly achieved 49% of orders, compared with 34% for GE and 16% for Siemens.

UK inflation down amid fall in energy prices

Feb 14 – Falling energy bills and fuel prices have pushed down UK inflation to a two-year low in January, according the Office for National Statistics (ONS). Inflation had peaked at a five-year high of 3.1% in November 2017, and is currently at just 1.8% – below the Bank of England’s 2% inflation target.

Lahmeyer is now Tractebel

Feb 13 –The German engineering and consulting company Lahmeyer International is now operating under the Tractebel, with the new company name; Tractebel Engineering GmbH. Tractebel reached a turnover of €662 million in 2018, and is part of the French energy group ENGIE.

BECCS pilot project starts at Drax

Feb 12 – The 4,000-MW Drax Power Station has started using bioenergy carbon capture and storage (BECCS) technology, capturing up to 1 ton of CO2 per day. The Drax demo plant in Selby, North Yorkshire, moves Britain further ahead in the race to develop BECCS technologies

Demand for power ships up 3.6% through 2026

Feb 11 – The global market for floating LNG-fuelled power ships is forecast to grow at an annual rate of 3.6%, exceeding exceed $1,073 million by 2026, according to ResearchandMarkets estimates. Power ships with a capacity between 100 MW and 150 MW, and usually leased for short durations, will cover most of the demand growth which is centred in Asia Pacific, sub-Saharan Africa and the Americas.

Australia’s H2U uses NovaLT turbine

Feb 8 – H2U, an Australian hydrogen infrastructure developer, will use Baker Hughes NovaLT gas turbine at is hydrogen and ammonia supply chain demonstrating plant in Port Lincoln. The greentech project integrates a 15 MW electrolyser plant, a 10 MW hydrogen-fired gas turbine and a 5 MW fuel cell, all of which set to supply electricity to the power grid in South Australia.

EC rules out Siemens/Alstom mobility merger

Feb 7 –The European Commission has decided to prohibit the proposed combination of the Siemens and Alstom mobility businesses. As a result of this prohibition, the merger will not proceed.

PG&E seeks to re-organize

Feb 6 – Having just filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, California utility Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) now seeks to restructure and access up to $6 billion in financing to help it operate while under bankruptcy protection. In a filing to the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the district of northern California, PG&E listed assets of $71.39 billion and liabilities of $51.69 billion.

Contigo enhances trading of DB Energy

Feb 5 – Contigo, together with the consulting firm Nevento, have introduced a new energy trading system at DB Energie of Deutsche Bahn. The system’s new functionality provides fast and easy access to business data and credit risk information, enabling effective decision making in energy trading.

ABB, Intel cooperate on digital substations

Feb 4 – ABB and Intel have agreed to jointly sell automation systems for utilities. At the core of the agreement is ABB Ability smart substation control for electrical systems, SSC600, powered by Intel Xeon processors.

Backup power for Hinkley Point C

Feb 1 – Rolls Royce will provide MTU diesel gensets to provide back-up power to the Hinkley Point C nuclear power station in Somerset. The generators, Type MTU 396 TB33 with 3600 kW output each, will provide emergency power in case of an outage of the site’s standing power supply

Gauging UK’s shift to green energy

Jan 31 – Engineering consultancy WSP has been selected to model the impact of low carbon technologies on the UK’s electricity networks. It will also work with the Energy Networks Association (ENA) on the Distribution Losses Mechanism Study.