Daily News
Monday, 26 June 2017 06:53 / Markets

Sharp drop US power sector emissions

As the energy mix across the United States continues to shift towards renewables and gas, the carbon intensity of the overall electric power sector is now lower than that of gas-fired power generation. After averaging near 60kg CO2/MMBtu for decades, the combustion-weighted carbon intensity in the electric power sector fell to 48kg CO2/MMBtu in 2016 – slightly lower than that of natural gas, which produces 53kg CO2/MMBtu.

Benefiting from high demand for gas auxiliary products, Innova Global has won a total of 19 new design, supply and install contracts, worth over $52 million, for several gas-fired power projects throughout North America. One of the latest orders covers the supply and installation of a Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) & Catalytic Oxidation (CO) gas-turbine exhaust stack scrubbers for a power plant expansion in the United States.

Pulling the plug on the Kemper County Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle (IGCC) power project, the Mississippi state energy regulator has passed a motion instructing its legal counsel to propose a solution that would end the Mississippi Power’s gasification project following years of delays and cost overruns. The watchdog encouraged Mississippi Power, however, to re-license the plant and produce electricity based on natural gas instead.

UK Power Networks has awarded a contract to Siemens to equip parts of its overhead-line power cables with 600 Fusesaver vacuum circuit-breakers and 200 remote control units (RCU).  The order volume is €1.5 million, and according to Siemens, it is the largest order to date for Fusesavers in Europe and the first one from the U.K.

Though Centrica CEO Ian Conn told the BBC this morning that closure of its 3.4 Bcm Rough gas storage facility will not destabilize Britain’s gas supply – given the possibility to import LNG and source gas from Norway and the EU through several interconnectors – some analysts see it differently. Commenting on Centrica’s move, Wood Mackenzie analyst Graham Freedman said the decision not reopen Rough storage comes as “no surprise” and makes “good commercial sense” for Centrica. However, he believes the implications on the UK's future security of gas supply “will no doubt lead to a UK Government review of its position, particularly in light of current Brexit negotiations.”

General Electric’s manufacturing operations in Greenville and Schenectady will supply two H-class gas turbines, three generators and a stream turbine for the 776-MW Topolobampo III gas power project. The contract win marks the first order of GE’s long-term customer Iberdrola for 7HA.01 technology in Mexico. The project is scheduled for completion in 2020. 

Seeking to intensify political ties by playing on energy economics, the Managing Director of Yerevan power station Sassan Khachaturian has offered to step up electricity exports to Armenia’s gas-rich neighbour Iran in return for making a continuous flow of gas supply available. "Armenia is ready to export more electricity to Iran during the hot summer days," Khachaturian said, asking for more gas import from Iran in return to meet his country's winter demand.

British Gas parent company Centrica has contractually agreed to sell its Langage and South Humber combined-cycle gas turbine (CCGT) power plants, with a total capacity of 2.3 GW, to the Czech utility Energetický a Průmyslový Holding (EPH) for £318 million ($401 million). The divestment comes just a day after Centrica announced the closure of its Rough gas storage and is part of the company’s strategy to downsize its overall operation as margins shrink.

PetroVietnam Power Corp (PV Power) is getting ready to start construction works for nine gas-fired power plants with combined output of 5,250 MW. Fuel for the power plants will be sourced in the form of associated gas from the Lo B O Mon and Ca Voi Xanh oil fields, along with some imported gas, according to PV Power general director Nguyen Xuan Hoa.

AIM-listed Tlou Energy has generated first electricity from coal-bed methane (CBM) at its field in Botswana following the installation of a gas generator at near Selemo. “First gas-to-power via CBM in Botswana is an extremely significant milestone [for us] and in effect a proof of concept of ‘first gas monetisation’,” commented Tlou managing director, Tony Gilbert.

Reliance Power still faces uncertainty over the source of LNG supply for its 718-MW gas-fired power plant project in Bangladesh, and is awaiting a government decision on the matter. The Indian energy company is the first to build a power plant that will run on regasified LNG in neighbouring Bangladesh; but to operate the plant near full capacity Reliance needs around 110 million cubic feet per day (mmcf/d) of natural gas as fuel.

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Environmental & Chemical Engineering (MHIEC) has won an order to build a municipal solid waste incineration plant in Shanghai, China. Delivery for key equipment is due in July 2018. Once operational, the waste-to-energy-plant will have a waste treatment capacity of 6,000 tons per day (tpd), one of the largest in the world.

A flurry of new gas power stations has been developed across most of the United States over the past fifteen years, with 228 GW of gas-fired capacity addition “far exceeding retirements of 54 GW,” according to the US Energy Information Administration (EIA). However, coal still dominates the energy mix in a few states, notably in the Midwest.

Top forecasters anticipate energy demand growth through 2035, but projections on rates and market size vary significantly between Wood Mackenzie’s 'Energy View to 2035' and similar outlooks by BP, ExxonMobil (XOM) or the IEA’s New Policies Scenario. Outlooks broadly agree on which fuels will win or lose across Asia Pacific: Coal is seen static across all forecasts, backed out by gas, nuclear and renewables, although WoodMac’s projection is highest on gas growth.

The 450-MW Huadian-Teninskaya combined heat and power (CHP) plant in Yaroslavl Oblast, central Russia, will be brought online on June 20, plant operator TGK-2 announced. The 20 billion Ruble ($347 million) project was realised by a joint venture between TGK-2 and China Huadian under a capacity supply agreement (CSA) but start-up was delayed by more than three years; hence the operators face penalties imposed by the regulator.

News in Brief

ABB delivers power solution for Shanghai Stock Exchange

July 21 – Swiss-based ABB has signed a contract to provide more than 1,500 units of MNS low-voltage switchgear for the Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE) before the end of the year. Dubbed the Jinqiao Technology Center project the MNS switchgear deployment is meant to support the safe, efficient and reliable operation of the stock exchanges’ data center. SSE is ranked #4 in the Shanghai market, and is ranked #26 in China.

TNB extends acquisition period for 51% stake in SPG

July 20 – Malaysia’s state utility Tenaga Nasional Bhd (TNB) has granted SIPP Energy an further 30 days to fulfil conditions set out in the May 3 acquisition agreement when TNB bought a 51% stake in SIPP Energy’s Johor-based unit SPG for RM51. Set up as a special purpose vehicle in august 2016, SPG was given regulatory approval last September to build a 2x720MW combined-cycle gas power plant in Pasir Gudang, Johor. The CCGT is scheduled to start full commercial operation at the start of July 2020.

TVA’s new plant produces 1 GW in first three months

July 19 – Tennessee Valley Authority’s (TVA) new combined cycle gas power plant in Muhlenberg County has produced over 1,025 MW of electricity in its first three months of operation. The cost of the project is estimated at about $850 million, but TVA senior vice president Bob Deacy underlined the new CCGT will give the operator the option of fuel switching to optimise its coal- and gas-burn which will ultimately save money. 

Toshiba opens hydrogen application centre in Tokyo

July 18 – Toshiba has opened a new hydrogen application centre at its Fuchu complex in western Tokyo. Research at the centre focuses the company’s new H2Onesolution for hydrogen supply system business for fuel-cell vehicles, or fuel-cell forklifts within buildings.  According to project manager Hiroyuki Ota, “This center showcases totally CO2-free operation, from hydrogen production through to application.”

Opening of Rhode Island plant delayed unit 2020

July 17 – Chicago-based Invenergy has delayed the start-up of its proposed natural gas-fired power plant in Rhode Island until “at least 2020,” citing “delays in permitting. The Chicago-based company had previously agreed to start selling power to the regional grid in 2019.

China’s energy efficiency sector tops $13bn in revenue

June 14 – The International Energy Agency (IEA) is supporting association member states in implementing energy efficiency measures. In China, government policy created a whole new sector for low-energy solutions, retrofits and services. This niche sector got started less than 20 years ago but already employs over 600,000 people and has annual revenues of over $13 billion.

Centrica starts building 50 MW unit

July 13 – UK energy supplier Centrica has announced that construction works are getting underway this week on its new 50 MW back-up power unit at Peterborough power station. The new gas-fired ‘peaking’ plant will be driven by five Wartsila-built reciprocating gas engines. The plant operator will dispatch the fast-ramp unit mostly on weekdays to cater periods of peak power demand or to provide back-up electricity when requested by the National Grid.

Siemens sues Technopromexport

July 12 – Siemens has filed a lawsuit against the Russian state firm Technopromexport on Tuesday after two gas turbines it sold for use in Russia have been diverted to Crimea, a region subject to EU sanctions. Siemens said its Russian customer had acted in bad faith, after Reuters disclosed Technopromexport had moved the turbines to Crimea where ZAO Interautomatika, a firm part-owned by Siemens, had been hired to install them.

GE Power on the road in the Middle East

July 11 – Holding a series of road-shows in Dubai UAE, Muscat, Oman and Islamabad, Pakistan in the coming weeks, GE Power is demonstrate its digital industrial solutions and HA technology. The events will also over GE’s 9E and 13E2 gas turbines, as well as mobile solutions such as the TM2500 aeroderivative gas turbine genset.

Pakistan’s PM inaugurates 760-MW unit of Haveli CCGT

July 10 – The Prime Minister of Pakistan, Nawaz Sharif has inaugurated the first unit of the Haveli Bahadur Shah gas power plant in Jhang province on late Friday. The 670-MW unit is running on regasified LNG. Once all units are fully operational, the combined-cycle gas power station will have a total generating capacity of 1,230 MW.

Siemens partners with China on digitalization

July 7 – Siemens has entered into agreements with the Chinese government and Chinese enterprises to continue joint activities for exploring the potential of digitalization and for supporting measures to upgrade and transform China’s industrial sector. The documents were signed today in Berlin this week in the presence of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

Gas-burn continues to rise

July 6 - Consumption of natural gas has risen in 9 of the past 10 years, according to EIA figures. As recently as 2006, the United States consumed more coal than natural gas (in energy-equivalent terms), but as gas use has increased—particularly in the electric power sector, where gas-burn in 2016 was about twice that of coal.

 

Tepco to bid on Oz power plant tender

July 5 – South Australia energy plan, as set out in mid-March, stipulates running a tender to build a gas-fired power plant with adjacent battery energy storage. The federal state government plans to invest $360 million in new generating capacity and it now emerges that policymakers look favourably on the power plant site and project proposal of Tepko.

Orascom carries out EPC for $100m power project in Egypt

June 4 – Orascom Construction has secured a $100 million contract to build a power plant with a projected capacity of 650 MW in Walideya, Egypt. The scope of Orascom’s contract includes the full civil works package for the project. The contractor stated that the project’s proximity to an existing power station in Assuit is expected to “facilitate efficient mobilisation on the site.”

Ingersoll-Rand buys MB Air Systems

July 3 – Ingersoll-Rand announced today it has completed the acquisition of MB Air Systems Ltd. The transaction closed on June 30, 2017.

Mouchel rebrands to WSP

July 3 – Mouchel, an engineering services consultancy, has changed its name to WSP across all offices in the UK following the integration of the two businesses. Since January all employees have been working under a new structure across Britain, headed by UK CEO Mark Naysmith.

Fisterra Energy ready for $600m power project in Guadalajara

June 30 – Fisterra Energy, majority-owned by Blackstone, is forging ahead with its Tierra Mojada combined-cycle gas turbine (CCGT) power project in Guadalajara, Mexico, after having reached financial close. The greenfield project was financed with $600 million of construction facilities and letters of credit by six banks. Construction on the 875-MW greenfield project is due to be finalized by the end of 2019.
Once operational, the gas power plant will powered by a GE H-class turbine, and most of its electricity output will be sold under 20-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) to Comisión Federal de Electricidad (CEF), Mexico’s national utility.