Daily News

Inter RAO UES, a Russian state-run power generator and exporter, and the Germany utility RWE are holding talks over establishing a joint venture power plant company. The JV would oversee the operation of existing and new coal- and gas-fired power stations in Germany, the Benelux countries and the UK.

Statkraft today said it will not replace a gas-fired power plant in Emden, north-west Germany. "By mothballing the plant and reducing the staff, combined with the completion of Knapsack II, Statkraft will achieve a more competitive gas power portfolio in Germany," Statkraft CEO, Christian Rynning-Tønnesen, said.

Pöyry Energy Consulting calls for a marked-based alternative to introducing formal capacity payments under the UK Electricity Market Reform (EMR). "Market-traded reserve products combined with imbalance prices could deliver a better outcome to support flexible power generation capacity," James Cox, Principal Consultant at Pöyry Energy Consulting told 'Gas-to-Power Journal'.

General Electric (GE) has secured a contract to supply equipment and services for a new 900 MW gas-fired power plant in southern Turkey. GE said it will supply the plant with two Frame 9FB Gas Turbines and three generators and has also has signed a 12-year service agreement.

French investment bank Société Générale recommends selling the Summer 2012 contract for natural gas traded at the British National Balancing Point (NBP), forecasting additional deliveries of Russian gas in over the coming months will leave markets oversupplied.

Qatar Electricity & Water Company (QEWC) has bought a 23.3% stake in the Jordan combined-cycle gas-fired Amman East power plant from IDB Infrastructure Fund, an infrastructure fund managed by EMP Bahrain.

Toshiba JSW has opened a new turbine manufacturing plant in Chennai, India, designed to become a "hub" to sustain the growth of its global thermal power plant business. The Japanese turbine and generator producer announced plans to double manufacturing capacity to 6000 MW by FY2015, when it will aim for US$400 million in sales.

RWE has halted operations of three units (1,065 MW) of the gas-fired Gersteinwerk power plant, located near Dortmund, due to a lack of gas supply. "We buy the gas for running the plant on a short-term basis from Open Grid Europe, so gas supply can be intermittent," a RWE Power spokesman told Gas-to-Power Journal.

Snam Rete Gas, the Italian gas grid operator, has alerted market participants late Monday that Russian gas supplies have dropped below contractually committed volumes. Operators of gas-fired power plants may face a squeeze in supplies.

French investment bank Société Générale today forecast the German baseload 2013 clean spark spread – the profit margin from generating electricity using gas – will remain negative at €5.1/MWh.

The Japanese electricity sector is understood to be close to hitting a physical limit in its overall gas-to-power generation capacity at about 6 million tonnes per month. Keen to avert looming electricity shortages, the Tokyo government now considers restarting two nuclear reactors in April, according to a Japanese media report.

E.ON Energy has extended the 446 MW capacity reduction at its gas-fired power plant Irsching 5 until Wednesday, February 15, an E.ON Energy spokeswoman told Gas-to-Power Journal today. The plant operator had filed an Urgent Market Message (UMM) this morning, indicating capacity at the plant was cut due to "issues with fuel supply".

Power supply in Nigeria has plunged to as low as 3,900 MW from already reduced levels at 4,400 MW, as operations at the Sapele Power Station were halted following the failure of a domestic gas transmission pipeline that feeds the plant.

South Korean operators of gas-fired power plants increasingly focus on the efficient operation of their plants as prices for importing LNG remain at high levels. Siemens Energy, a major seller of gas turbines, has singled out efficiency as the key selling point for selling turbines into Asian markets.

Toshiba Corporation, a major supplier of thermal power generation equipment, has won a contract from the U.S. engineering and construction company Fluor to supply a 195 MW steam turbine and generator for a gas-fired combined cycle power plant (CCGT).

News in Brief

Brexit will not impact UK gas supply

Oct 16 – Security of power and gas supply in the UK will not be jeopardized this winter by the country’s imminent departure from the European Union, even in the event of a hard Brexit, National Grid said. In its assessment, the TSO factored in a halt to flows via the Belgium and Dutch gas interconnectors “from EU exit day one”, but said ongoing deliveries from Norway, the UK Continental Shelf and storage will continue as usual.

Ferrybridge C gets demolished

Oct 15 – Four cooling towers at the Ferrybridge Power Station have been taken down as the coal-fired power station will make way to a new, high-efficiency gas power station. Operator SSE shut down the 500 MW Ferrybridge C unit in March 2016 and now started to tear it down.

Global energy storage tops 10 GW by 2025

Oct 14 – The global market for grid-connected energy storage will grow by 6,900 MW, or 16.6% to reach over 10,500 MW by the end of 2025, according to Reportlinker.com. Germany will add over 267 MW energy storage installations over the next five to six years, while 330 MW will come from other European markets. These numbers are dwarfed by China, where up to 1,200 MW energy storage units could be connected to the grid by 2025.

Wärtsilä services EDL plant

Oct 11 – Energy Developments Ltd (EDL) of Australia has awarded Wärtsilä a service contract for gas engine-based baseload power plant at the McArthur River zinc mine in Northern Territory. The maintenance approach for the 53 MW onsite power plant is no longer pre-planned and scheduled but has been changed to condition-based and predictive maintenance, with an advisory contract.

EPH buys CCGT in Galway

Oct 10 – The Czech energy company EPH has received regulatory approval to purchase an 80% stake in the 400 MW Tynagh Energy combined-cycle gas power plant in Galway, Ireland. Mountainside Partners will continue to own the remaining stake in the CCGT, which operates based on a security-of-supply contract from the Irish TSO based on guaranteed power prices.

ITM gets £38m boost from Linde

Oct 9 – Sheffield-based ITM Power, maker of electrolysers for hydrogen production, has been boosted by a £38 million cash injection, as Linde acquired a 20% stake in ITM at 40 pence per share. Looking ahead, ITM said it is seeking to raise £14 million from new and existing institutional investors.

Drax to convert two power units

Oct 8 – Drax Group has received government approval to convert up to two coal-fired generating units at its power station in North Yorkshire to run on natural gas. With this ruling, the UK regulator overturned objections by ClientEarth, stressing some fossil power is vital for the UK to backup intermittent renewable power source.

Storage use tops 80% in key U.S. regions

Oct 7 – Gas storage utilization in the United States is rising in the autumn, with net injections topping 112 billion cubic feet (Bcf) in the first week of October. According to EIA figures, underground storages are at least 80% full in the East, Midwest, and South Central non-salt regions, allowing for seasonal withdrawals to help meet peak-day gas demand throughout the upcoming winter.

Maine, NY aspire to 100% clean energy

Oct 4 – Three U.S. states—Maine, New York, and Ohio—have updated their renewable portfolio standards (RPS), since May 2019. As a result, Maine and New York joined California, Hawaii, Nevada, New Mexico, and the District of Columbia in requiring 100% clean electricity by 2050.

TransAlta to built CHP in Alberta

Oct 3 – Canada-based Transalta and SemCAMS Midstream have agreed to develop, construct and operate a new cogeneration facility at the Kaybob South No. 3 sour gas processing plant in Alberta. To be built at a cost of some 105 million, the CHP will have an installed capacity of 40 MW. Start of commercial operation is targeted for late 2021.

GE’s 100th HA turbine sold in Greece

Oct 2 – Greek industrial firm Mytilineos has ordered a GE 9HA.02 gas turbine to be the heart of the 826 MW Agios Nikolaos combined-cycle gas power plant. This deal also marks the 100th unit of GE’s HA gas turbine sold. Construction of the CCGT is due to start before the end of the year.

ABB launches M4M analyzer

Oct 1 – Swiss technology firm ABB has launches its first Bluetooth-equipped network analyzers, called M4M. The system gathers data from distribution grids and connects them to a cloud-based control system, allowing users to react on energy consumption and on-site power generation trends.

Microsoft invests in wind power

Sept 30 – Microsoft and ENGIE have entered a long-term solar and wind energy power purchase agreement (PPA) in the United States. The deal will see Microsoft purchase a total of 230 MW from two ENGIE projects in Texas, bringing Microsoft’s renewable energy portfolio to more than 1,900 MW.

Gazprom tackles issue of ownerless gas grid

Sept 27 – Gazprom, the main supplier of pipeline gas to Europe, is trying to settle the issue of ownerless gas pipelines – a relic of the former Soviet Union. Abandoned gas transmission pipeline spanned 6,651 kilometers as of March 1, with the issue seen as “especially acute” in the North Caucasus region where half of this infrastructure is located. If no owner registers these facilities within three months, Gazprom will take over to ensure reliability and safety.

Investors flock to Myanmar

Sept 26 – Fitch Ratings has singled out Myanmar’s power sector as one of the largest beneficiaries of foreign direct investments (FDI) worldwide. Nearly $21.2 billion was poured into power generation and energy infrastructure projects thus far in 2019, which is 27% of total FDI under the Myanmar Investment Law.

Is hydrogen Singapore’s future fuel?

Sept 25 – KBR and Argus have been selected to conduct a feasibility study on hydrogen imports and downstream applications for Singapore through to 2050. The aim is to assess the feasibility and cost-effectiveness of hydrogen use in Singapore’s power generation and transport sectors

Diablo Unit-2 offline

Sept 24 – Unit-2 at the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant in California is offline for a scheduled maintenance and refuelling, the operator PG&E said. During the outage, several gas-fired power plants will be dispatched to make up for the missing capacity.