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.
A surge in US spot gas prices by 40% to 60% during the first half of this year, an a subsequent nationwide rise in power prices, has helped coal to regain market share in the American energy mix. As operators had to pay more for the gas to fuel their plants, on-peak, day-ahead wholesale electricity prices increased uniformly throughout the continental United States, excluding prices in the non-contiguous states of Alaska and Hawaii.
Rapid uptake in flexible renewable energy units in Germany will help reduce the risk of negative power prices and limits the need for fossil plants to provide backup capacity, a study published by the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research (ISI) found.
American power equipment manufacturer Emerson Process Management has upgraded the Oviation control systems at EnergyWorks' combined heat and power (CHP) plant in Cartagena, Spain, completing the migration project during a 10-day scheduled outage without interrupting the supply of steam to a neighbouring factory.
US electric utilities can reduce their costs, risks and losses by investing in small-scale fast-ramp combined heat and power (CHP) plants "in a piecemeal fashion" at strategic locations to help mitigate supply constraints to the power grid at times of peak demands, suggests Anna Chitum, senior policy analyst at American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE).
Profit margins in the European power market "will not recover in the foreseeable future," the Swedish utility Vattenfall said today when announcing a €3.5 billion write-down and a split of business operations into Nordic and continental European segments as of 1 January 2014.
Electricity prices in Long Island, New York have surged to record highs of up to $850 per megawatt hour (MWh), accelerated by demand for air conditioning brought on by temperatures as high as 97 degrees. New York City exceeded its 33,939MW all-time peak in power demand, reaching 34,600MW on July 19, the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) said in its latest North-eastern Summer Electricity Market Alert.
Germany's second largest utility RWE gears up to save "at least €500m per year" in costs at its power generation unit, in a move aimed at balancing losses incurred from falling wholesale power prices and reduced run-time hours of its fossil power plant fleet.
With European power prices caught in a downward spiral, utilities like Franco-Belgian GDF Suez or Germany's EnBW, E.on and RWE will resort to "more capacity closures", forecasts JP Morgan Cazenove.
As part of a 'smart grid' feasibility study, energy storage company ITM Power has launched an upgrade to its hydrogen-producing HGas electrolyser on the Isle of Wight, UK to allow more solar and wind power to come on the grid safely. Sponsored by the UK government, the study examines how HGas electrolyser units produce hydrogen gas from surplus renewable power that utilities can sell as fuel to natural gas consumers and power plants.
Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has won a majority in the upper house, ending a political stalemate as he now controls both houses of parliament. The reshuffle paves the way for Japan to return to nuclear power, in a move poised to curb LNG imports and reduce the share of gas for power generation.
A heat wave in North Asia has spurred LNG demand for power generation amid rising use of air conditioning, with buyers rushing to increase gas inventories to cover summer spot requirements.