Forward fuel prices for winter 2013/14 predicted by the UK's gas and power TSO National Grid strongly favour coal burn over gas. The spark spread versus clean dark spread shows that coal is a clear winner for profitability, with a continued difference of over £10/MWh in favour of coal. For gas and coal to be equitable the gas price needs to fall by about 40% or around 30p/therm, alternatively coal prices would need to see a near doubling and increase by about $80/tonne.
Demand for new highly efficient gas power plants will not abate in Japan and South Korea regardless of high costs for LNG as a fuel, says GE's regional general manager power generation for Asia Pacific, Ramesh Singaram. As for Japan, he sees an annual demand for 3.5 to 4 gigawatt of new-build capacity over the next ten year. "Anything coming from nuclear would be upside," he told Gas to Power Journal.
The operator of Dabhol, India's largest gas-fired power plant, are considering renting out the 1,967-megawatt plant to private electricity producers under a tolling model, after operations were halted due to domestic gas shortages. Burning LNG instead is not an option: "We cannot recover the high cost of imported gas," said the plant operator RGPPL.
Saudi Arabia is set to burn more of its domestic gas resources to generate power as it invests $109 billion to increase alternative and renewable energy sources. "Over the past two years we have seen a renewed commitment to alternative energies by the Saudi government," James Fallon, Saudi analyst at Control Risks said speaking to Gas to Power Journal.
Coal is set to overtake natural gas as it emerges as the "fuel of choice" in Southeast Asia due to its relative abundance and affordability, as the region's power demand is nearly doubling over the next two decades, forecast Yerim Park, Programme Officer - South East Asia, International Energy Agency (IEA).
The pace of depletion of Thailand's gas resources is concerning policy makers as it puts power supply security at risks and threatens to lead to high costs for gas and power imports. "If we do nothing, our energy import dependence will top 95% by 2030," Dr. Twarath Sutabutr, deputy director general at Thailand's Department of Alternative Energy Development and Efficiency warned, singling out renewable energy and interconnectors a key solutions.
Single-cycle gas combustion turbines play a vital role in ensuring US energy security, accounting for up to 27% of peakload power supply, according to new analysis by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). Single cycle turbines contributed 121 gigawatts of power and accounted for 3% of overall electricity generation in 2012.
Pavilion Gas, the LNG unit of Singapore's state-owned investment company, plans to boost its existing S$1bn investment in the sector with a view to start LNG trading in the region within three months. "I believe we have what it takes to attract growing LNG volumes into Asia, and will be in a position to set LNG prices in the region." Seah Moon Ming, chief executive of Pavillion said, suggesting this may lower prices.