Widening cost divergence between coal and gas generation and spark spreads becoming ever more negative amid rising renewable feed-in, has caused a 42 percent plunge in E.ON's first-half 2013 profit and heralds further power plant closures in Europe.
"A sober view of the situation indicates that, at least for 2013 and 2014, no recovery is in sight," said E.ON CEO Johannes Teyssen when presenting the results.
EDF has handed over operation of three of its nuclear plants in the US, two in New York and one in Maryland, to its joint venture partner Exelon, citing higher profitability of generating electricity from gas and operational risks of nuclear reactors.
South Korea's state-owned Kogas has forecast its domestic LNG sales in 2013 will jump 3.6 percent year-on-year to reach 36.548 mtpa amid rising demand from gas-fired power generators. A heat wave propelled up electricity consumption and squeezed reserve margins, prompting the energy ministry to ration energy use to avert the risk of blackouts.
Despite the growth in capacity, not all gas-fired plants are continuously used as Brazil's gas industry is going through a transition period and is adjusting to changes in the gas supply balance whereby lower imports of pipeline gas from Bolivia are balanced with rising LNG imports and new domestic gas reserves from upstream projects in Santos, Campos, and Espririto Santos basin.
This insight comes from a thought-provoking book released by the British Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Brazil (Britcham) entitled Doing Energy Business in Brazil.
Use of premix combustion chambers has helped MAN Diesel and Turbo achieve a breakthrough by reducing nitrogen-oxide (NOx) emissions at its MGT 6100 gas turbine (6-8 MW) to single digits at up to 100 percent load.
Capacity markets will provide stable cash flows to thermal generators in the UK to enable them to finance new projects at lower discount rates, reflecting lower risk. However, financiers may find that regulatory uncertainty exceeds the price risk in energy-only markets, warns Dr. Jim Fitzgerald, associate partner at The Advisory House.
Alstom has validated its MXL2 upgrade for GT26 gas turbines, enabling operators to flexibly dispatch their plants and match production hours to fluctuating demand – a key requirement in markets with high volumes of intermittent renewable power supply such as Spain or Germany.
Ontario Power Authority's (OPA) latest report, issued at the request of the Canadian energy ministry, is likely to shake-up the top-down planning process for gas-fired power stations in the region and might spark a flurry of follow-up consultations.
Indian power plant equipment manufacturer Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd (BHEL) has won a €32.5 million (Rs.2650 million) contract to supply gas turbines for a state-owned 103.5MW combined heat and power (CHP) plant at Kochi Refinery.
E.ON, Europe's second largest power producer after EDF, is assessing the feasibility and costs of extracting and relocating gas turbines from its mothballed Malzenice power plant to more profitable markets like Turkey.
Siemens has won an order to deliver eight SGT-800 industrial gas turbines to supply heat and power for the $20 billion Yamal LNG production plant in the North of Western Siberia.
American power producer NRG Energy has started commercial operation of its repowered 550MW El Segundo Energy Center only weeks before the launch of the adjacent 392 MW Ivanpah Solar Power Facility. The repowering stepped up the capacity of the combined-cycle gas turbine plant by 158MW, and equipped it with new turbines to support renewable energy integration.