Projects & Finance

In the first seven weeks of operation, Stadtwerke Kiel’s new gas-fuelled combined heat and power plant (CHP) has set “new standards in terms of flexibility, efficiency and sustainability,” the operator said. Powered by 20 Jenbacher J920 FleXtra gas engines, Kiel’s new coastal power plant provides 190 MW electricity and 192 MW thermal energy.

To enhance reliability of its Alon Tavor power plant, MRC Group has signed a 15-year service deal with General Electric. The contract covers parts, repairs, and predictive maintenance for GE’s 9FA unit installed at the 375 MW combined cycle unit, located in the northern Israeli city of Afula.

The Brazilian utility Rio Amazonas Energia (RAESA) has contracted Wärtsilä to convert the Cristiano Rocha power plant in Manaus to run fully on natural gas, while increasing output from 85 MW to 92 MW. This will reduce the plant’s OPEX, and reduce emissions. Works are due completed in the first half of 2021.

Israel Electric Corporation (IEC) has awarded another order to GE to provide a second 9HA.01 gas turbine for the Orot Rabin modernization project. The aim is to convert parts of the 2.59 GW coal-fired power station at Hadera into Israel’s largest combined-cycle gas turbine plant, delivering up to 1,260 MW.

French oil and gas major Total has signed an agreement with Gigajoules Group of South Africa to import and deliver regasified LNG for a projected large-scale gas power station at the outskirts of the Mozambican capital Beluluane. Importing LNG is vital given that there is not enough domestic gas supply to fuel the 2,000 MW power project.

Zhefu Holding Group of China and the Myanmar-listed firm Supreme Trading Co. have made plans to invest up to $2.57 billion to build an LNG import terminal and adjacent gas-fired power station at Mee Laung Gyaing. The integrated project will cover the energy needs for regional industrial zones, hotels and the city of Yangon.

Hong Kong-listed VPower Group, together with Myanmar’s Zeya Associates, are fast-tracking construction works for four emergency power projects in Myanmar, after having won a competitive tender in mid-October. The three power units, with a combined capacity of 900 MW, will be operated on imported LNG.

US equity fund Kohlberg Kravis Roberts (KKR), alongside Alberta Investment, has sealed a deal to purchase a 65 percent equity interest in the Coastal GasLink Pipeline. Spanning over 416 miles, the gas interconnector links the Montney Shale with the Pacific Coast and has been built by TC Energy at a cost of cost of C$6.6 billion (US$5.04bn).

Brazil’s state development bank (BNDES) has agreed debt financing of over 2 billion Brazilian Real (US$0.49bn), spread over 24 years, for the 565 MW Marlim Azul combined-cycle gas power project in Macaé, Rio de Janeiro State. The 565 MW plant is being co-developed by Patria Investments, Shell and Mitsubishi Hitachi Power Systems Americas (MHPS).

Aggreko is fast-tracking the delivery of a gas-battery hybrid power solution to the largest steel manufacturing and processing and in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The 24 MW hybrid unit will deliver a 49 percent cost saving for the mill operator, United Steel Industries Fujairah.

Finnish equipment manufacturer Wärtsilä has commissioned the first ever utility-scale gas engine project in Papua New Guinea. Situated Port Moresby, the capital city, the 58 MW gas-fired power unit will enhance local electricity supply and ensure grid stability.

Dominion Energy has applied for an air permit, one of the final regulatory warrants required to realize a $600 million gas-fired peaking power plant in Chesterfield County near Dutch Gap conservation area, Virginia. The four proposed open-cycle gas turbine (OCGT) power units would be built by spring 2023, and only dispatched at times of high demand.

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News in Brief

Siemens to service Kalamkas gas turbines

June 4 – JSC Mangistaumunaigaz, one of Kazakhstan’s largest oil and gas producers, has contracted Siemens to service two STG-800 gas turbines at a power plant, designed to meet the entire energy needs of the nearby Kalamkas oil and gas field. The nine-year contract covers turbine maintenance and eventual upgrades as well as remote monitoring of operations.

NamPower to invest $575m on grid expansion

June 3 – Namibia’s state-owned utility NamPower is planning to spend $575 million over the next three years in upgrading and extending its power transmission infrastructure. Namibia imports 60% of its total electrical energy requirement, primarily through bilateral contracts from South Africa’s Eskom and to a lesser extent, the Southern Africa Power Pool (SAPP).

UK TSOs call for £900m green gas investment

June 2 – Britain’s five gas network companies – Cadent, National Grid, NGN, SGN and Wales & West Utilities – have urged the Government to unlock over £900 million (€1bn) for new green gas infrastructure. Research by the Energy Networks Association (ENA) shows that if investment into zero-carbon hydrogen infrastructure started today, the UK could save energy bill payers £89 billion (€99.2bn) by 2044 – five years prior to its 2050 net-zero targets.

Exxon, INNIO about to launch gas engine oil

June 1 – ExxonMobil and INNIO have announced the imminent launch of their first co-engineered and co-branded natural gas engine oil. The U.S. oil major and the Austrian engine maker have just extended their global lubricant collaboration agreement for INNIO’s Jenbacher Type 2, 3, 4, 6 and 9 natural gas engines.

BelGAS launches new pressure regulator

May 29 – BelGAS has introduced its new P1098 High-Capacity Pressure Reducing Regulator, a large-volume regulator for natural gas, propane and other fuels. The pilot-operated device has a large-area actuator diaphragm, allowing for fast and accurate response to modulating gas flow conditions. It is adaptable for low to extra-high pressure—up to 400 psi main valve inlet.

GE to sell lightning business

May 28 – GE has signed a definitive agreement to sell its lighting business to Savant Systems, a provider of smart homes. CEO H. Lawrence Culp called the divestment “an important step in the transformation of GE into a more focused industrial company.” The transaction is expected to close in mid-2020.

China’s fuel demand recovers

May 27 – The Chinese government has lifted restrictions on private travel since April which pushed up demand for transport fuels. Gasoline demand has recovered particularly fast and is expected to return to last year’s levels by June 2020. Wood Mackenzie estimates gasoline consumption to reach 3.4 million barrels per day (b/d) in the second quarter, down just a 0.8% year on year. Diesel or gasoil demand is expected to reach 3.4 million b/d in Q2 2020, a 3% decline year-on-year. Overall, China’s oil demand is seen rise a “modest” 13.6 million bpd, or 2.3%, in the second half of 2020.

Wärtsilä to retrofit CHP in Spain

May 26 – The Finish engine maker Wärtsilä has bagged an order to supply and install a 34SG gas-fuelled engine generating set for Rofeica Energia's combined heat and power plant in Barcelona, Spain. The installation of the gas engine will allow Rofeica to switch the CHP from heavy fuel oil to gas-fuelled operation, reducing emissions.

New York body rejects William’s plans for gas pipeline expansion

May 21 – New York’s and New Jersey’s state bodies for environmental conservation have rejected Williams’ plans for the Northeast Supply Enhancement project, designed to transport 400 million cubic feet per day of gas from Pennsylvania to New York. The state bodies had already denied wetland permits in 2019, but Williams pipeline subsidiary Transco filed another application with the U.S. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), arguing firm services under the project were agreed with UK’s National Grid for customers in New York City districts of Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island and Long Island.

UK inflation at 4-year low amid falling energy costs

May 20 – The rate of inflation in the UK has fallen to a four-year low as the pandemic pushed down global oil and fuel prices which translate into lower wholesale power prices. The consumer price index fell to an annual rate of 0.8% in April, down from 1.5% in March, according to the Office for National Statistics.

Deficit grows in German green energy fund

May 19 – German regional grid operator TransnetBW has warned of a growing shortfall in the country’s fund for green energy sources, financed under the so-called renewable energy (EEG) levy. TransnetBW, the TSO in southwest Germany, said “due to the EEG cost allocations defined for 2020, we anticipate there will be a negative year end bank account balance in the high three-digit million euro range for 2020.”

Spanish gas companies ‘resilient’

May 18 – Spain’s regulated gas companies “should prove to be resilient” to external shocks arising from coronavirus containment measures, Standard & Poor’s analysis finds, calculating with an average drop in EBITBA at less than 3% in 2020. A new remuneration framework for 2021-2026, recently enacted by the Spanish government, provides enhanced visibility rated grid operators amid the pandemic.

German electricity prices second highest in EU

May 15 – Taxes and the renewable energy surcharge have pushed up Germany’s household electricity prices to the second highest level in Europe, topped only by prices in Denmark. While Danish households paid 29.2 Euros per 100 kWh on average in the second half of 2019, prices in Germany averaged 28.7 Euros, according to the EU statistics office Eurostat.

Calpine’s Q1 earnings fall

May 14 – Calpine, America’s largest generator of electricity from gas and geothermal, has reported a net income of $128 million for the first quarter of 2020, down from $175 million in the prior year period. Lower commodity margins and unfavourable change in income taxes were partially offset by earnings from hedge positions for the three month ending March 31.

Siemens to supply hybrid plant in the Philippines

May 13 – Berkley Energy has contracted Siemens Energy to build a hybrid power project on the island of Mindoro in the Philippines. The project links 16 MW wind power with battery storage, stabilizing energy supply in a remote location with a weak link to the grid and reducing its dependence on diesel.

U.S. energy emissions fall

May 12 – Energy-related carbon emissions in the United States have fallen more than energy consumption, down 2.8% over the course of last year to 5,130 million metric tons (MMmt). Power sector emissions were down 145 MMmt, due to a switch from coal to gas and renewables. In April 2020, emissions experienced another unprecedented fall in due to Covid-19 lockdowns.

MAN expands Omincare concept

March 11 – MAN Energy Solutions’ service brand has extended its ‘PrimeServ Omnicare’ concept from turbomachinery to the marine and power segments. The one-stop service solution is now also applicable for maintenance of third-party machinery, including engines, turbochargers and related auxiliaries.