A tight-fought general election in Germany has resulted in a thin victory for the Social Democrats while the long-ruling Conservatives suffered a historic loss. Both parties now strive to form a coalition with the Green Party, which recorded its best result ever and the pro-business Free Democrats. A hot topic of the novelty three-party government will be the energy transition and climate change.
The cost of shielding customers of failing UK energy providers could lead to a substantial rise in power and gas bills, energy regulator Ofgem warns. The Government is preparing to offer loans to larger utilities to make them take on stranded customers from bankrupt firms like Bulb, Arvro and Octopus.
Fast-rising gas prices at the UK National Balancing Point (NBP) are causing a wave of bankruptcies. Bulb, Britain's sixth largest energy company, is seeking a bailout and Government promised to intervene by offering state-backed loans to surviving energy firms to ensure stable supply to end-customers this winter.
The International Energy Agency (IEA) is calling for tougher regulation on methane emissions. Downstream oil and gas – notably refining, transmission, storage and distribution – is responsible for more than 20% of methane emissions, a potent greenhouse gas. Worldwide, downstream methane emissions amounted to 16 million tons (Mt) in 2020.
The Government of the Philippines is accelerating the approval process for LNG import terminals to avoid a spike in electricity prices and power shortages, once Malampaya reserves will be depleted in 2024. First Gen and Atlantic Gulf & Pacific Co (AG&P) projects were given Notice to proceed (NTP) and urged to complete their projects by the second half of 2022.
Germany’s energy ministry (BWMi) has put forward rules to select areas for offshore wind farms in the North and Baltic Sea. In contrast to grid-connected wind farms which are chosen according to their guaranteed feed-in-tariff, the new offshore projects will generate green hydrogen directly at sea that is then brought ashore by ship or via pipelines.
People in Britain will face a substantial rise in energy bills after the industry regulator Ofgem increases the cap on prices that power generators can charge. Ofgem today announced energy suppliers can charge customers roughly £139 more from October, and customers on prepayment contracts will have to shoulder a £153 raise.
Rising CO2 costs accelerate the coal exit in Germany. With the EU’s carbon price trading above €56 per ton, a lignite power station in Chemnitz will be shut early and the conservative chancellor candidate Armin Laschet suggested North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) “could manage [the coal exit] as early as 2030” – years before the mandatory exit date in 2038.
The European Commission’s ‘Fit for 55’ legislative sets a 55% net emission reduction target to 1990-levels by 2030 and acknowledges the critical role electricity will play. “Everything that can be electrified, should be electrified,” analysts commented. For industry sectors not suitable for electrification, Brussels is promoting low-carbon hydrogen, carbon capture and storage and biofuels.