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Daily News

Power and automation technology group ABB has won an order worth $21 million from Columbia's EPM, a multi-utility and telco focusing on power generation, to build a new gas-insulated switchgear transmission substation in Santander.

Bowing to regulatory pressure, Wall Street's bellwether trading house JP Morgan Chase has decided to exit physical commodities trading which includes ownership of power plants and metal warehouses.

Florida Power & Light Company (FPL), the state's largest utility and gas user, has selected Sabal Trail Transmission and Florida Southeast Connection to build two natural gas pipelines and an interconnection hub worth over $3.5 billion to help dent growing regional electricity demand.

An $18 million program to install a state-wide microgrid, powered by distributed gas-fired turbines, has been launched in the US coastal state of Connecticut to keep the lights on in public buildings during grid outages in severe weather. The scheme comes after hurricane Sandy last year caused 5 deaths in the state, and $68 billion in damages nationwide.

Alstom Transmission and Distribution's branch, Alstom T&D, in India has agreed to supply substations, shunt reactors, and circuit breakers worth €37 million (2,558 million rupees) to the Indian state-owned utility Power Grid Corp to ease the grid congestion caused in part by power supply from new-build thermal capacity.

Relocating the gas turbine and generator, or even the entire plant, to more profitable markets like Turkey could be a last resort for E.on to extract value from its mothballed power plant in Malzenice, Slovakia, says Thomas Kaestner, energy expert at Ernst & Young.

Siemens has won a contract to supply EPC Samsung C&T Malaysia with two H-Class gas turbines for the 1GW TNB Prai combined-cycle power plant (CCPP), build at a cost of RM2.49 billion ($0.78 billion) in the city Seberang Perai, Malaysia. 

World energy consumption is forecast to soar 56 percent between 2010 and 2040, from 524 quadrillion British thermal units (Btu) to 820 quadrillion Btu. In its International Energy Outlook 2013 (IEO2013), the EIA highlighted a 90 percent surge of energy use in non-OECD countries, compared with a meagre 17 percent rise in OECD countries.

German engineering conglomerate Siemens has reported that it will not achieve its 12 percent total sectors profit margin target in fiscal 2014, mainly due to "lower expectations in a quieter market".

The Indonesian government is committed to spending $99 million on a 50MW gas-fired plant to power the new Teluk Lamong Multipurpose Terminal at the port of Tanjung Perak in the city of Surabaya. The EPC contractor PT Rekayasa Industri will realise the project on behalf of the state-owned port operator, PT Pelindo III.

Japan is on the verge of losing its status as the world's biggest LNG buyer, as imports of natural gas fell sharply in H1'2013 amid reduced demand from power producers on the eve of a restart of the country's nuclear reactors.

Vitol, one of the world's top oil traders, has completed the purchase of its first power plant asset – the 1,240MW gas-fired combined heat and power plant in Immingham, northeast England, in a strategic move to expand its physical portfolio.

News in Brief

China seen overtake Japan as worlds’ largest LNG buyer by 2025

July 15 – The International Energy Agency (IEA) expects China to overtake Japan as the world’s biggest LNG buyer with imports of 128 Bcm a year by 2025, equivalent to around 174 million tonnes. However, IEA analysts cautioned this scenario is “highly dependent on China’s future policy direction” and whether that includes an ongoing push for coal-to-gas switching for industry, residential heating and power generation.

IEA stages Clean Energy Transitions Summit

July 14 – Ministers from dozens of countries, accounting for over 80% of the world economy, have participated in the first Clean Energy Transitions Summit organised by the International Energy Agency (IEA). Dr Fatih Birol, the IEA’s Executive Director, said there “clearly is momentum” behind a sustainable recovery from the economic impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic. Participants agreed to reconvene in mid-2021.

Siemens Energy to exit coal

Jul 13 – Newly formed technology company Siemens Energy wants to phase-out any operations and technology to related to coal-fired power generation, CEO Joe Kaeser said, without giving a specific timeline. Siemens had been harshly criticised earlier this year for participating in the Adani coal mine project in Australia.

Statkraft, GE enhance GB grid stability

July 10 – Statkraft and GE Power Conversion are working together to stabilise Britain’s power grid. To that end, GE will manufacture and install two Rotating Stabiliser synchronous machines at Statkraft’s site in Keith, Moray. Statkraft was awarded four stability contracts (two at Keith and two at Lister Drive) by National Grid ESO (NGESO) earlier this year.

Siemens Energy spin-off approved

July 9 – A large majority of Siemens shareholders have voted to approve the spin-off of the company’s energy business. The spin-off was approved by 99.36 percent of capital stock represented at today’s extraordinary shareholders’ meeting.

Central Hudson links solar farms to VPP

July 9 – Central Hudson Gas & Electric Corp has established its distributed generation program within the broader context of New York State’s energy plan. Together with Sensus and their Remote Telemetry Module (RTM-III), the Central Hudson will monitor decentralized solar PV backed up by flexible gas gensets.

Siemens and GREEN Solar turn German town CO2-free

July 8 – GREEN Solar and Siemens Energy are jointly developing a concept for making Herzogenrath CO2-free. The plan is to provide an energy-efficient and economical combination of solar power plants, wind turbines, batteries, CHP and combined cycle power plants, as well as heat and hydrogen storage. The hybrid system will be built on the grounds of Nivelsteiner Sandwerke and will be large enough to cover the city’s entire energy demand with zero CO2 emissions by 2030.

Denmark paves the way for Nord Stream 2

July 7– Denmark on late Monday gave the Nord Stream 2 consortium permission to utilize pipe-laying vessels with anchors in Danish waters, paving the way for the Gazprom-led consortium to complete the interconnector. Construction of the 1,230-kilometre pipeline is nearly complete, except for a final stretch of about 120-kilometers in Danish waters. The project was halted in December when the Swiss-Dutch pipe-laying company Allseas suspended works over threats of U.S. sanctions.

EPRI tests early warning system

July 6– The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) is conducting trial tests with multiple utilities across the United States of an early warning system. It can detect an off-gassing event as a precursor to thermal runaway up to 30 minutes prior to a cascading failure. This gives plant operators time to mitigate the problem or shut down the system.

KKR buys stake in First Gen

July 3 – Valorous Asia Holdings, owned by KKR investment funds, has bought a 11.9% stake in First Gen through a voluntary tender offer. First Gen, one of the Philippines’ largest independent power producers with 3,492 MW installed capacity, is owned by First Philippine Holdings which is controlled by the Lopez family. KKR’s acquisition of the First Gen stake is worth nearly $192.3 million.

Gazprom’s ‘BBB’ rating affirmed

July 2 – S&P Global Ratings, Moody's Investors Service and Fitch Ratings have affirmed Gazprom's long-term credit ratings as part of their annual reviews. The ‘BBB’ ratings for Gazprom from S&P and Fitch are in line with the sovereign credit rating of the Russian Federation, while Moody's ‘Baa2’ rating is a notch higher.

MHIEC to refurbish WtE plant in Kushiro

July 1 – Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Environmental & Chemical Engineering Co (MHIEC) has received an order from the Kushiro Wide-Area Federation to repair and improve the core equipment at the local Waste-to-Energy plant in Takayama. The WtE plant has a capacity of 240 tonnes per day (tpd). Renovation will increase the energy efficiency of the fluidized bed type gasification and ash melting furnace facility, reducing emissions by around 15% annually. Works are due completed in September 2023.

Nigeria: Only two of six power projects on target

June 30 – Nigeria’s Bureau of Public Enterprises has disclosed that only two out of six privatized power plants were delivered on target. Only Transcorp Power Ltd and Geregu Power Ltd out of the six privatised electricity generation companies (GENCOs) were said to have met their performance targets since taking over.

German investors prefer solar over wind

June 29 – Energy infrastructure investors are keen to build solar power projects in Germany, but shun wind parks. In the latest solar power auction, investors offered to build almost 450 MW of capacity – more than four times the 96 MW of volume on offer– with the average successful bid at 5.27 cents per kilowatt-hour (ct/kWh). The wind auction, in contrast, was undersubscribed: The German network agency  (BNetzA) tendered around 826 MW, but successful bids only totalled 464 MW, at an average price of 6.14 ct/KWh.

MAN ventures into synthetic fuels

June 26 – MAN Energy Solutions has entered the hydrogen economy with the recent pro rata acquisition of H-TEC SYSTEMS, an electrolysis tech firm. The German OEM also committed itself to upgrading its gas turbines to run on 100% hydrogen by 2030.

Varegro starts using Cummins gas genset

June 25 – Belgian-based horticultural company Varegro, has started to use a Cummins HSK78G gas generator to power its greenhouses in Oostrozebeke, West Flanders. Varegro said it selected the Cummins HSK78G genset to produce combined heat and power (CHP) on its premises at a competitive cost for use in energy-intensive greenhouse facilities.

GE names Deloitte as independent auditor

June 24 – GE’s audit committee has selected Deloitte as the company’s independent auditor for the 2021 fiscal year, replacing KPMG. The selection of Deloitte concludes GE’s latest audit tender process.

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