Daily News

Australia’s Origin Energy has announced a 15-18% rise in 2017 power prices for customers in New South Wales (NSW) and South Australia (SA) from July 1. Passing fuel costs through to consumers, Origin's decision makes average small-sized companies pay $750-920 per year more for their electricity use. With this latest price hike, Origin follows in the footsteps of EnergyAustralia, AGL Energy and ActewAGL all of which are already implementing power prices rises of up to 20%.

Castle Peak Power Company, a 70:30 joint venture between CLP Power Hong Kong and China Southern Power Grid International, has selected Leighton Asia to carry out civil works at the 2,500 MW Black Point Power Station in Hong Kong. Works come at an estimated cost of US$122 million and will help the plant operator to achieve its gas generation targets by 2020.

Friday, 16 June 2017 07:50 / Projects & Finance

EIP invests in Powerphase

Energy Impact Partners (EIP) has closed an investment in Powerphase. The investment is the first institutional round of financing raised by Powerphase, the company said without disclosing the value of the deal. Powerphase, an US-based provider of gas turbine upgrade technology stated it will use the financing to expand its geographic reach and accelerate deployment of its Turbophase product.

The EV30@30 campaign has been launched during the 8th Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM) Meeting on June 8 in Beijing. The campaign sets a “collective aspirational goal” of a 30% market share for electric vehicles by 2030. Deployment of electric cars is already proceeding swiftly in some markets: In Norway, electric cars had a 29% market share last year, the highest globally, followed by the Netherlands with 6.4%, and Sweden with 3.4%.

The Finish technology group Wärtsilä has been contracted to supply a power plant extension to AngloGold Ashanti's gold mine in Siguiri, Guinea. The turnkey project consists of three 20-cylinder Wärtsilä 32TS engines, to be connected with the existing power plant at site. The extension is due operational in the second half of 2018.

China's National Energy Administration is targeting to produce 50 Bcm of gas from coal by 2020, enough to satisfy 10% of gas demand from industries and power producers. Turning to coal gasificiation would allow China to utilise a domestically abundant fossil resource in a cleaner way, while reducing dependence on Russian pipeline gas or LNG imports.

Collectively, power plants are responsible for a declining share of U.S. air pollution emissions, a Ceres benchmarking report finds. Yet, emission levels vary significantly dependent on the volume of power output, fuel type and use, efficiency of generation technology, and installed pollution control.

California ISO, the state power grid operator, has been given the regulatory green light from the California Energy Commission (CEC) to carry out a review to consider alternatives to the Puente Power Project (P3), proposed by NRG Energy. In its regulatory order, the CEC said it "understands development of such a study is normally a complex and intensive undertaking, but is hopeful that the California ISO will be able to derive a simplified set of assumptions that will allow the ISO to provide meaningful results within the Committee’s timeline."

Enel, Europe’s biggest utility by market value, is about to shut down two large coal power plants in Spain by 2018, following through with a decision by CEO Francesco Starace to close the company’s entire coal and lignite generation by 2030. His new strategy shows the impact of new EU pollution limits, particularly the revised Best Available Techniques Reference Document, known as BREF.

Expanding its product offering, Nymex-listed Ingersoll-Rand has recently added 50 percent more compressed air rental equipment to its fleet in the U.S., Europe, Middle East, India and Africa. The US company rents out compressed air solutions that keep critical manufacturing processes up and running during emergencies or planned projects.

US electric utility Duke Energy has chosen Siemens as its EPC partner to design a new turbine for the 400-MW expansion of Lincoln County power plant. The expansion will enlarge Duke’s Lincoln Combustion Turbine Station – a 1,200 MW gas power station with 16 turbines – and allow for the production of enough additional peaking energy to meet Duke Energy customers' needs in the Carolinas by 2024.

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has made available over $28 million for cost-shared research and development. The new funding, part of the Office of Fossil Energy’s Advanced Energy Systems program, is designed to help research on technologies related to advanced combustion systems, advanced turbines and gasification. Some $5.15 million are for the University Turbine Systems Research (UTSR) Program.

The US state of California has teamed up with several German states in the ‘Under2Coaltion’ to tackle climate change. Edmund G. Brown, Governor of California said US President Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris Agreement underscored the “significance of subnational actors.” California, the sixth-largest economy in the world, is adamant to pursue its clean energy targets and, together, with several German federal states, aims to provide strong leadership in the COP23 climate talks in Bonn this November.

More than 15% of the world’s population, or around 1.1 billion people, were without stable access to electricity in 2014 even though electrification rates have been rising gradually over the past decade. Back in 1994, a quarter of the world’ population had no access to electricity. According to the latest World Bank data, electrification levels improved most, albeit from low levels, in rural areas in Africa, the Middle East, and Southeast Asia.

John Flannery today has been named as chairman and chief executive of General Electric, replacing Jeff Immelt who steps down from his role after 16 years at the helm of one of America's largest corporations. Mr Flannery, is currently the head of GE’s healthcare sector, and in 2014 led GE’s takeover of the French turbine and train manufacturer Alstom.

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.