Markets

The German economy ministry has dedicated €900 million for a hydrogen auction platform, set up by Siemens Energy, Linde, Nordex and ThyssenKrupp. Green hydrogen or derivatives will be bought abroad through the H2Global Foundation, and resold to industry via annual auctions starting from 2024.

Power generation in Nigeria dropped to 3,059 MW on May 28 and stayed below 4,000 MW for the following seven days, 6% below average production. Low pressure on the Escravos-Lagos Pipeline System (ELPS) had left several gas turbine power plants with insufficient fuel, leading to widespread blackouts that “could have been avoided,” Wärtsilä claims.

Commissioning is underway for Nord Stream 2 and once the pipeline starts up in late August, or early September, cheap Russian gas supply will likely reduce US LNG exports to Europe. These days, the arbitrage between the United States and Europe is still “very healthy” at $6/MMBtu, analysts noted, hence 36% of US LNG cargoes were headed to Europe through mid-May.

Transporting electricity to the UK costs dearly, particularly on the Nemo Link from Belgium where the May 2021 auction resulted in a price of €19.42/MWh – the most expensive in Europe. Researchers at the market data platform EnAppSys explained the high export price with “regulatory differences” between the GB electricity market and its EU neighbours.

To mitigate blackout risks, South Africa needs 4-6 GW installed power gen capacity and the government aims to add 20 GW in the long term. GE reckons renewables and LNG-fuelled power will be the country’s “fastest and most cost-effective pathway to decarbonisation.”

Build-out of electolysers in Europe will rise 50-fold, consultancy Delta-EE finds, with EU markets on track for 2.7 GW operational hydrogen production capacity by 2025. Research shows Germany leads the market for now, with Spain, Netherlands and Denmark aiming towards the 100s MW in four years’ time.

Octávio Simões, Tellurian president and CEO, expects LNG demand will increase as the world electrifies and its population grows. To make the superchilled gas attractive, Tellurian offers volumes on JKM, TTF or blended price basis and has just sealed a 10-year supply deal with Vitol.

Industry, transport and the heating sector in Germany will need significantly more  hydrogen than the current 57 Terrawatt-hours (TWh) per year, produced almost entirely from fossil fuels. Come 2030, the demand for green hydrogen and derivatives will be around 80 TWh and could surge to 300 TWh by 2040, the Fraunhofer institute forecasts.

Argentina’s seasonal LNG imports are increasing following the arrival of Excelerate’s FSRU Exemplar at Bahia Blanca, just south of Buenos Aires. The first commissioning cargo already arrived at the FSRU which helps source additional supply for the southern-hemisphere 2021 winter season.

Strengthening economics of coal-to-gas switching has pushed up prices at the TTF, Europe’s most liquid gas trading hub. With carbon and coal prices up by 33% and 26%, respectively, TTF gas prices increased $3/MMBtu to nearly $9/MMBtu. Restriction to coal-burn also boosts the dispatch of gas-fired power plant in South Korea and Taiwan.

Japanese turbine maker Mitsubishi Power has set up the ‘Gas Turbine Combined Cycle EMEA Business Unit’ in Dubai to sell more J-series air cooled (JAC) turbines into Europe and the Middle East. JAC turbines can operate on a 30:70 fuel mix of hydrogen and natural gas, and are meant to run fully on hydrogen in the future.

Developers of LNG-to-Power projects are advised to secure flexible gas delivery terms through an aggregator before the market flips again and demand outstrips supply. According to Watson Farley & Williams, this is likely to happen by 2022 or 2023 as current Capex cuts delay new liquefaction projects.

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News in Brief

Howden powers methanol plant

July 29 – Howden will deliver a hydrogen compressor to Johnson Matthey to serve the world’s first methanol plant that harnesses energy from the wind, in Patagonia, Chile. The Haru Oni project will deliver around 900,000 litres per year of e-methanol as early as 2022 and will be scaled up to 550 million litres of e-fuels per year by 2026.

Bloom SOFCs to power micro plant in South Korea

July 28 – California-based Bloom Energy, in cooperation with SK ecoplant, will install solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) in a combined heat and power (CHP) plant in Donghae City, South Korea. The CHP will provide heat and warm water for the nearby Bukpyung sports center. Construction on the project is slated to start this autumn.

Shanghai Electric to digitalise factories

July 27 – Shanghai Electric has entered a partnership with AI Investment Fund at the WAIC 2021 conference to provide digital solutions to industrial parks and medical institutions. Yang Hong, Vice President of Shanghai Electric said the aim is to help industries to minimise emissions and waste while maintaining low unit costs.

Slow LNG uptake in Africa

July 26 – In Africa, the uptake of LNG imports to new markets has been slow. Both Ghana’s 1.7 million tons per annum (mtpa) Tema LNG and Senegal’s 1.0 mtpa Dakar Powership are still awaiting their first LNG deliveries, though their respective FSRUs Vasant and Karmol LNGt Powership Africa have been in place since June.

Growth in turbine air filtration tops 3%

July 22 – The turbine air filtration market is expected to grow 3.27% annually from $1.92 billion in 2020 to reach $2.29 billion in 2026. Demand from the oil & gas industry and electric utilities had plunged during the corona crisis and subsequent economic downturn, but the latest trend towards clean energy is driving robust growth for turbine air filtration which can be widely and easily applied in the power sector.

US oil exports stay high

July 21 – Despite volatile prices, U.S. crude oil exports reached a record high in 2020 and remained strong this year, averaging 3.51 million barrels per day (b/d). Expanded ports at Houston and Corpus Christi allow for oil to be exported from the Permian Basin and Eagle Ford Basin.

CVEC to be converted to hydrogen

July 20 – Cricket Valley Energy Center (CVEC) is taking steps to run the  combined-cycle plants on hydrogen. Works to convert the plant will be carried out by GE and are scheduled to start in late 2022. One of three GE 7F.05 gas turbines at CVEC will be introduced to a 5% hydrogen blend with natural gas.

MAN ETES labelled solar impulse efficient

July 16 – MAN Electro-Thermal Energy Storage (ETES) was attributed the “Solar Impulse Efficient Solution” label by independent auditors. In January, the German manufacturer supplied to ETES heat pumps to DIN Forsyning for a heat and power plant in the Danish port city Esbjerg.

Electricity sales to US industry rebounds

July 14 – Economic recovery has caused a 5.1% rise electricity sales to US industry this year, dwarfing 2.8% more retail sales and a 2.1% rise in the commercial sector as many office workers continue working from home. The US Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) acting administrator, Steve Nalley, called the rebound in electricity sales to industry a “strong sign of rising levels of economic output as the Covid-19 pandemic recedes.”

Solar PV to triple in Asia by 2030

July 13 – Asia Pacific solar photovoltaic capacity could triple to 1,500 gigawatts (GW) by 2030. According to Wood Mackenzie estimates, China will add 619 GW of mainly utility-scale capacity while most other nations in Asia prefers distributed solar due to land constraints. Solar PV tends to be backed up by flexible gas gensets and energy storage, forming hybrid power units.

Kinder Morgan closes on Stagecoach assets

July 12 – US energy infrastructure major Kinder Morgan has closed its acquisition of Stagecoach Gas Services. The deal include 4 gas storage facilities with a 41 bcf working gas capacity and a transmission network with multiple interconnects to major interstate pipelines, including Tennessee Gas Pipeline. The Stagecoach assets add to Kinder Morgan’s approximately 83,000 miles of pipelines and 144 terminals.

Dortmund cancels electrotechnik fair

July 9 – The elektrotechnik fair, planned for 29 September to 1 October 2021, will now not be taking place in Dortmund due to requests from the industry. The next trade fair for building, industrial, energy and lighting technology will now open its doors again in spring 2023.

Hitachi to change name of ABB Power Grids

July 7 – Hitachi ABB Power Grids will become Hitachi Energy in October. The Japanese manufacturer bought a controlling stake in ABB’s grid business a year ago and is about to fully take the name of the merged company while expanding its direction towards e-mobility and data centres.

Tapping wind energy for hydrogen

July 6 – Spanish utility Naturgy and the gas grid operator Enagás are evaluating the use of 350 MW offshore and onshore wind capacity to produce green hydrogen. The fuel will be used to decarbonise the steel industry and shipyard in northwest Spain.

EU seeks to expand Green Deal to Africa

July 5 – The European Green Deal should be expanded to also include African states as partners, the German development minister Gerd Müller said. Green hydrogen production in Africa, in his view, should be a “cornerstone for economic cooperation with the Europe.”

Decom Engineering updates PCR

July 2 – Northern Ireland-based Decom Engineering has invested more than £700,000 to develop tools for repurposing and clean decommissioning of energy infrastructure. Through updated Pipe Coating Removal (PCR) equipment, decommissioned or surplus pipelines can be cleaned of multiple coatings, so they can be repurposed for used on other projects.

Cummins buys half of Momentum Fuels

July 1 – Cummins has signed a letter of intent to acquire a 50% equity interest in Momentum Fuel Technologies from Rush Enterprises. The transaction is expected to close before year-end, and the combined venture will produce Cummins-branded natural gas fuel delivery systems for the commercial vehicle market in North America.

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