Thursday, February 27, 2020

Electricity Grids News

North Sea Countries to Boost Offshore Wind

Image: WindEurope

Energy Ministers from North Seas countries met yesterday (December 04) in Brussels and agreed their 2020 Work Program on offshore wind deployment as a means of reaching climate neutrality by 2050.The 10 North Seas Energy Cooperation countries – Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and the UK – agreed at their Ministerial meeting in Esbjerg in June 2019 to broaden the scope of their cooperation. Their 2020 Work Program now elaborates what they intend to do together on maritime spatial planning…

EU Targets 450 GW Offshore Wind by 2050

Image: WindEurope

The EU Commission’s big goals for offshore wind – between 230 and 450 GW by 2050 – are achievable provided the right investments in electricity grids and Governments take the right approach to maritime spatial planning, said a report.According to the WindEurope report examines where 450 GW of offshore wind could be deployed most cost-effectively around Europe, bearing in mind there is only 20 GW today. 450 GW of offshore wind is part of a European Commission…

COBRA Cable Readies for Action

IGBT converter tower  inside the COBRAcable converter station in Eemshaven (photo: Siemens)

The 700MW COBRAcable interconnector linking the Dutch and the Danish grid will be available for the electricity market as of delivery day, 7 September, Dutch high-voltage grid operator TenneT said."After three years of construction, including the laying of the submarine cables as well as the construction of two onshore converter stations, and a successful test phase earlier this year, COBRAcable will be available for the electricity market as of the delivery day of 7 September…

MAN ES Invests in Hydrogen

"We view this partnership with H-TEC SYSTEMS as a strategic milestone and as our entry into the hydrogen economy," says Dr. Uwe Lauber, CEO of MAN Energy Solutions, commenting on its acquisition of 40 percent of H-TEC SYSTEMS. Image: MAN Energy Solutions

MAN Energy Solutions is acquiring 40 percent of the shares of the electrolysis technology company H-TEC SYSTEMS. A contract confirming the partial acquisition was signed in Augsburg by Dr. Uwe Lauber, CEO of MAN Energy Solutions, and Ove Petersen and Heinrich Gärtner, executive managers of the GP JOULE Group. The contract also makes provisions for a majority or complete takeover of H-TEC SYSTEMS at a later date. The company will continue to be independently represented on the market with no change in the level of commitment to its customers.

Poland and Lithuania Agree to Build Undersea Power Cable

Polish and Lithuanian power grid operators said on Friday they had agreed to build a high voltage direct current (HVDC) underwater cable by 2025 as part of a plan to connect the electricity grids of the Baltic states with those of the European Union.Poland's PSE and Lithuania's Litgrid said they signed an initial cooperation agreement regarding what they called a "Harmony Link", with an investment decision expected in 2020.EU Climate Commissioner Arias Canete was quoted in a statement as saying the cross-border project was a clear sign of how political and professional

Chile Eyes Further Energy Exports to Argentina

Chile is looking at boosting energy exports to Argentina and connecting with electricity grids in neighboring countries, as it seeks to capitalize on friendly relations to drive down prices, the energy minister said Thursday. Chile, which has almost no hydrocarbons of its own and an energy-intensive copper mining industry, has struggled for years with high power prices. But a shift towards renewables and warming relations with neighboring countries is starting to take some of the pressure off.

Europe's Power Market Reform a Boon for Struggling Utilities

European utilities welcomed long-awaited power market reform proposals on Wednesday, hoping a framework to subsidise fossil fuel plants and plans to wind down a key support for renewable energy could turn the page on years of crisis. The European Commission's 1,000-page draft reform "Winter Package" proposes binding targets to cut energy use by 30 percent by 2030 and wants to put Europe on track for renewables to power half of the continent by 2030. But it…

ARENA Making Electricity Grids Smarter

Rooftop solar panels Photo ARENA

More than 150 households in NSW and Victoria will take part in an innovative new trial to test how smart inverters can work alongside rooftop solar and home energy storage to cut costs and improve the stability and reliability of Australia’s electricity supply. ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht said ARENA was pleased to be supporting the Institute for Sustainable Futures (ISF) trial as part of ARENA’s efforts to accelerate Australia’s transition to an energy system powered by renewables that will serve the needs of Australians into the future.

World First to Combine Big Solar and Storage

Conergy’s media release and an artist’s impression of the plant

A world-leading project in far north Queensland is set to combine big battery storage and big solar to supply solar power after sundown and during peak usage times. The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) is providing $17.4 million funding support for Conergy to build and operate a 10.8 MW (AC) solar photovoltaic (PV) plant with 1.4 MW / 5.3 MWh of lithium-ion battery storage near the town of Lakeland. ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht said the landmark project…

Canada's Clean Energy Spending Collapses

Spending on clean energy projects in Canada fell 16 percent in 2015 compared with the record investments of the prior year and a renewed push to cut emissions may not lead to a rebound until 2018, an advocacy group said on Thursday. Companies and governments spent C$10 billion ($7.7 billion) on wind, solar, hydro, biomass and biogas projects in Canada last year, Clean Energy Canada said in a report, while total clean energy capacity rose 4 percent to just under 100 gigawatts.

Argentina Starts Alternative Energy Push

Argentina invited bids for projects aimed at creating 1,000 megawatts of alternative energy on Wednesday in the country's first push toward wind and solar power production needed to help narrow its energy deficit. Argentine President Mauricio Macri said the projects would be the initial stage of a plan that calls for 10,000 megawatts, or 20 percent of Argentine energy consumption, to come from renewable sources by 2025. For years Argentina, home to one of the world's biggest but untapped shale oil formations, has been a net energy importer.

Turkish Power Ship to Supply Electricity to Zambia

Turkey's Karadeniz will in the next two weeks begin supplying Zambia with electricity from a power-generating ship as it looks to take advantage of chronic shortages in Africa, the company said on Wednesday. Karadeniz builds what are effectively floating power stations which plug into electricity grids after berthing. They run on fuel oil but can also use natural gas. One of the firm's vessels docked this week at Mozambique's Nacala port, from where it will supply 100 megawatts of electricity for the next two years…

Pumped Hydro Storage to Revive Old Mines

Disused Kidston Gold Mine in North Queensland

ARENA is providing $4 million support towards a feasibility study into the construction of a 330 MW pumped storage hydroelectric power plant at the disused Kidston Gold Mine in North Queensland. The funding will allow Genex Power Limited to build on preliminary work already underway to examine the technical and commercial viability of its proposed $282 million power plant. Acting ARENA CEO Ian Kay said the work could reinvigorate the pumped hydro storage industry in Australia and enable more renewable energy to be used on national grids.

Baltic States Look to Cut Energy Cord with Russia

Baltic states are looking to synchronise their electricity grids with Nordic countries, away from Russia, in a move that has angered the Kremlin and could cost hundreds of millions of euros, government and energy officials said. More than 20 years after splitting from the former Soviet Union and joining the European Union in 2004, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia still depend on Russian power grid operators. They have begun reducing their dependence on Russian gas imports after Lithuania opened a floating liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal last year…

Extra Solar PV for Grid - NT Study

This project has developed innovative strategies for the distribution of mature, commercialised PV technologies within existing electricity networks, and in particular identified that up to 10MW of distributed solar PV coul

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) today released a study that shows how up to 10MW of extra solar photovoltaic (PV) could be installed in the Alice Springs grid without adversely affecting supply stability. ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht said this additional PV would make a sizeable difference to the Alice Springs grid, which currently has 4.1MW of solar and a peak load of almost 55MW in summer. “The findings of this study are timely and show how more solar PV could be reliably introduced into Australian electricity networks,” Mr Frischknecht said.

Houses with Solar cum Battery Roofs

Alkimos Beach Solar Panel + Battery

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) today announced $3.3 million funding for Synergy to trial a combination of rooftop solar photovoltaic (PV) with battery storage at a new housing development in Alkimos Beach, north of Perth in Western Australia. ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht said the model being trialled included new tariff options for consumers and had the potential to be replicated in future residential developments across Australia. “The trial…

Battery trial to put storage on the front foot

Logo

A new Canberra-based storage trial will examine whether lithium-ion batteries could enhance electricity grids and increase the use of renewable energy. Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) CEO Ivor Frischknecht said IT Power (ITP) would carry out the trial, supported by $450,000 of ARENA funding. “ITP will analyse the performance of six major lithium-ion battery brands, comparing them to existing and advanced lead-acid battery technologies to investigate how they could operate in large and small electricity grids,” Mr Frischknecht said.

ARENA Supports Local Energy Projects

ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht

The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) is providing $250,000 to support the development of new locally based renewable energy projects through investigating more flexible tariffs and charges. ARENA CEO Ivor Frischknecht said the Institute for Sustainable Futures at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) would conduct studies, consultations and virtual trials to inform potential rule changes in the National Electricity Market (NEM). two potential reforms.

Volatility, Flash Events in Oil Markets: Kemp

Crude oil prices have been more volatile this year than at any time since the financial crisis of 2008/09 and before that 1991, according to standard measures of price variability. Some of the increase in volatility is more apparent than real, however, as every $1 per barrel move translates into a larger shift in percentage terms now that prices have halved from $100 per barrel to less than $50. The chief of the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC)…

BNP Will Double Renewable Energy Investments

French banking group BNP Paribas will double its investment in renewable energy projects to 15 billion euros ($16.07 billion) by 2020 from 6.9 billion euros and will no longer finance coal extraction projects, it said on Thursday. The bank also said it would continue to promote green bonds among institutional investors. "Doubling our funding for renewable energy and strengthening our carbon risk management system is an environmental requirement. It is also an economic requirement," BNP said in a statement.