Friday, March 22, 2019

Electricity News

Shell Bids to Build Dutch Offshore Wind Farms

© Michael Halberg / Adobe Stock

Royal Dutch Shell has teamed up with energy company Eneco and builder Van Oord in a bid to build two wind farms in the Dutch part of the North Sea, the companies said on Wednesday.The tender for the wind farms, with total capacity of 750 megawatts (MW), is open until March 14 for bids that require no subsidies on electricity prices.The Dutch were among the first to offer a 'zero subsidy' tender for wind power in 2017, with Sweden's Vattenfall winning the right to build a 700 MW wind farm without price support.Vattenfall has said it would also bid in the latest tender, which is the fourth of five being held by the Dutch governme

Partners Group invests in Greenlink

Marine survey work starts for Greenlink interconnector. Image : MV Franklin ( © MMT Sweden)

Private markets investor Partners Group has provided equity financing for the 500-MW Greenlink interconnector,  the subsea connection between Wales and Ireland in exchange for a stake in the scheme.To-date, Greenlink has been developed by Element Power, an independent renewable energy developer, which, together with funds managed by Hudson Sustainable Investments, is the other major shareholder in Greenlink.Greenlink will use a subsea high-voltage direct current (HVDC) cable system to connect the power markets of Ireland and Great Britain…

VA Offshore Wind: A Strong Foundation

© dell/Adobe Stock

Virginia officials have established a well-planned, extensive strategy to build out an offshore wind industry, including wind towers for electricity generation and the supply chain to support that extensive infrastructure and operations. The State’s big picture is ambitious: developing 2,000 MW of offshore wind by 2028.As currently envisioned, VA’s offshore wind development will likely start this year with two 8-megawatt wind turbines 27 miles off the coast of Virginia Beach. This is a Dominion Energy pilot undertaken in partnership with the Danish wind company Orsted.

Ven's Blackout Halts Oil Exports From Primary Port

An idled PDVSA tanker (CREDIT: © MarineTraffic.com / Leslie Brug

Venezuela's state-run oil firm PDVSA has been unable to resume crude exports from its primary port since last week's massive power outage, essentially crippling the OPEC nation's principal industry, people familiar with the matter said on Monday.Power remained patchy in most of the country after a blackout on Thursday that the government of President Nicolas Maduro claimed was a U.S.-backed act of "sabotage" on the country's principal hydroelectric dam.His critics insist it is the result of more than a decade…

EC Probes E.ON-Innogy Merger

Image: Innogy SE

The European Commission has opened an in-depth investigation into German utility E.on's  takeover of certain assets from domestic Innogy, saying the transaction may lead to higher prices for consumers.The deal, which is worth a reported €43 billion ($48 billion at today's conversion rate), includes Innogy's distribution and consumer solutions business, as well as certain electricity generation assets.The Commission has concerns that the proposed acquisition may reduce competition in retail markets for electricity and gas in several Member States.Commissioner Margrethe Vestager…

World Bank Targets Offshore Wind Markets

Image: Orsted

The World Bank Group announced a new program to advance the adoption of offshore wind energy in developing countries and emerging markets.The World Bank and  International Finance Corporation (IFC) will help these markets evaluate their offshore wind potential and provide technical assistance to develop a growing pipeline of projects that are ready for investment by renewable energy developers, said a release from the  international financial institution.The offshore wind industry has grown nearly five-fold since 2011…

Mobile Battery MgBOX in Sea Trials

MgBOX from The Furukawa Battery Company. Pic: Eco Marine Power Co. Ltd.

Japanese marine renewable energy technology compan Eco Marine Power (EMP) is conducting an evaluation trial using the MgBOX fuel cell or air battery in co-operation with Furukawa Battery Co., Ltd. (Furukawa Battery) and several ship owners.These trials will help determine how this innovative emergency battery can be best stored and used on ships. Once this work is completed it is planned to make the MgBOX available for use worldwide on a variety of vessels, offshore platforms & other marine applications.The MgBOX is a small and portable emergency magnesium (Mg) air battery developed by Furukawa Battery.

MHI Vestas: Brexit Will Not Deter Investment in Britain's Wind Sector

Photo: MHI Vestas

Japanese-Danish joint venture MHI Vestas plans to continue investing in its wind turbine blade manufacturing plant in Britain, despite the country's impending departure from the European Union, its chief executive told Reuters.MHI Vestas, a venture between Denmark's Vestas Wind Systems A/S and Japan's Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, makes wind turbine blades on the Isle of Wight, off the southern English coast.Some 76 percent of the turbine blades made at the site in 2019 will be exported to projects in Europe…

U.S. LNG Exports Soar, Europe a Big Buyer

File image: LNG tanker transiting the Med (Credit: Robert Murphy)

U.S. LNG to Europe may squeeze out smaller gas suppliers.Shipments of U.S. liquefied natural gas (LNG) have gathered pace in March and Europe is set to stay a top destination for spot cargoes with Asian prices still too low to ship the chilled fuel that far.But winter demand for gas is fading, while steady supplies of gas and LNG have kept inventories well stocked, depressing European gas hub prices. This has raised the question: how many more cargoes can Europe absorb?Suppliers of U.S. LNG have loaded 14 cargoes so far in March…

Vattenfall Bids for 750 MW Dutch Offshore Wind

Image: Vattenfall

European energy company Vattenfall has decided to participate in the 750 MW offshore wind tender for Hollandse Kust Zuid 3 & 4, in the Dutch part of the North Sea.The yearly production is estimated to provide electricity to around 1.3 million Dutch households and thereby strengthen Vattenfall´s ambition for a fossil free living within one generation for our customers."Vattenfall is strongly committed to the Dutch market. Through the participation in the Hollandse Kust Zuid (HKZ) 3 & 4 tender Vattenfall wants to further increase our contribution to the renewable transition of the Dutch energy system.

Vitol and KOMIPO Sign LNG Pact

Photo: Vitol

South Korea's Korea Midland Power (KOMIPO) and Vitol Asia have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on cooperation in various sectors including liquefied natural gas (LNG).Under an existing long-term Supply and Purchase Agreement (SPA), signed in 2015, Vitol agreed to supply KOMIPO with 400,000 tons of LNG annually for 10 years, said a press release from Vitol.Hyung Koo Park, President and CEO of KOMIPO said, “KOMIPO looks forward to developing its relationship with Vitol, our trusted partner in the LNG business.”CEO of Vitol Group…

Repsol Net Profit Up 7.5%

(Photo: Repsol)

Spanish oil and gas firm Repsol beat forecasts with a 7.5 percent increase in fourth-quarter adjusted net profit on Thursday, boosted by higher oil and gas prices and increased production, and said its strategic plan was on track.Repsol started new projects in Algeria, Trinidad and Tobago, Britain, Peru and Malaysia during 2018, and benefited in October-December from an annual rise in prices and lower exploration costs.The company said it was on track to deliver its 2018-2020 strategic objectives, which include 15 billion euros ($17.1 billion) in spending, cutting debt and investing in renewables.In the fourth quarter, recurrin

Siemens inks $78.4 mln Wind Turbine Deal

image credit: Siemens

Wind turbine maker Siemens Gamesa signed a 69 million euro ($78.4 million) contract on Tuesday to supply Bosnia's biggest power utility EPBiH with wind turbines for a future 48 megawatt (MW) wind farm.Under the contract the company will supply 15 turbines and build the wind park on the Podvelezje plateau near the southern town of Mostar. The deadline to complete the project is 21 months, said EPBiH.It will also service the turbines for five years.The total cost of building the wind farm, the first in EPBiH's portfolio, was put at around 83 million euros.

France to Test Floating Wind Turbines

© Fokke / Adobe Stock

The European Commission said on Monday it had authorized French subsidies to four offshore wind farm projects which are aimed at testing a new way of producing electricity from wind.The EU competition regulator said in a statement that the state aid was in line with EU rules as it was proportionate and could help develop a new type of technology to produce renewable energy.Three of the floating wind farms are in the Mediterranean Sea and one in the Atlantic Ocean.The demonstration wind farms will use a particular combination of turbine, floater and cables with a total installed capacity of 24 megawatt each."The objective of the

Wind Provides 14% of European Electricity

Image: WindEurope

Wind energy provided 14% of the European Union’s electricity last year, according to figures published by the region’s wind energy trade body, WindEurope, with 11.7 gigawatts (GW) of new capacity added, including 2.65 GW of offshore wind. Continued growth in capacity and the use of more powerful turbines are helping to drive up wind’s share in the electricity mix. Denmark had the highest share of wind in its electricity last year (41%) followed by Ireland (28%) and Portugal (24%). Wind was 21% of Germany’s electricity.Wind accounted for 49% of all the new power generation capacity in Europe in 2018.

Bad Choices cost Pemex $1 bln

Mexico's state-oil company Pemex burned through $665 million at its fertilizer unit, ignored consultants and made high-risk investments with no discernible business strategy, according to a devastating government audit of its 2017 operations.The report, published late on Wednesday, offers insight into how Pemex ended up creaking under $106 billion of debt during the six-year term of former President Enrique Pena Nieto.Mexico's Federal Audit Office (ASF) used unusually frank language in its assessment of Pemex's use of public resources…

Magallanes Installs Turbine at EMEC

Image: EMEC

Spanish tidal energy developer Magallanes Renovables is testing its tidal technology on a test site at the European Marine Energy Centre (EMEC) in Orkney, Scotland.The successful installation of their second generation (2G) 2MW tidal platform ‘ATIR’ took place on 16th February and marks a major milestone in the Ocean_2G project, which aims to test, validate and pre-certify Magallanes’ device, said a release from EMEC.The ATIR was built and launched in Vigo, Spain in 2017, where it underwent a structured test programme to optimise the system…

World’s Largest Offshore Wind Farm Generates First Power

Image: Ørsted

The first turbine of the 1,218-MW Hornsea 1 offshore wind farm in the North Sea, the world’s biggest such facility, has been installed and is now generating power.Matthew Wright, UK managing director of Danish energy group Ørsted A/S, described the installation of the first turbine as "a globally significant milestone".Ørsted co-owns the project with Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP) after selling a 50% stake to the latter in November 2018. Ørsted began offshore construction just over a year ago, and…

Groningen Seaports, Vopak Push Solar Power

Vopak Terminal Eemshaven. Pic: Groningen Seaports

The Dutch tank storage company Royal Vopak,  Groningen Seaports and Whitehelm Capital announce their intention to jointly invest in a 27 MW solar park. The solar photovoltaic field will be one of the largest currently in the Netherlands.The new solar park will be situated on 19 ha of land adjacent to Vopak Terminal Eemshaven, land which is currently already leased by the terminal. The produced green electricity will be made available for local use in Groningen and Vopak terminals.Based on the available energy infrastructure…

India, China to Lead Rapid Growth in Energy

 Graphic of renewable energy sources by BP

The major chunk of global energy supply growth is expected to come from renewables and natural gas over the next two decades, but steep investment in oil exploration and production will be needed to meet crude demand in 2040.The global energy demand is set to rise by around a third by 2040, driven by improvement in living standards, particularly in India, China and across Asia.- These are the key highlights of BP Energy Outlook 2019.It shows how rising prosperity drives an increase in global energy demand and how that demand will be met over the coming decades through a diverse range of supplies including oil…