Thursday, April 26, 2018

Crowley, PowerSecure Partner on LNG Microgrids Development

(Photo: Crowley)

Industry partners aim to develop and deploy microgrid solutions incorporating liquefied natural gas (LNG), renewables and storage to provide greater reliability and resiliency to customers and economies throughout the Caribbean and Central America.Microgrid solutions provided by partners Crowley FUELS and PowerSecure, a Southern Company subsidiary, will provide end users with quality, efficient, clean and resilient power. The Crowley/PowerSecure…

India, UK Govts Invest $711 mln in Indian Renewable Energy Fund

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Lightsource BP and Indian private equity fund Everstone Group announced on Wednesday the creation of a 500 million pound ($711 million) fund to invest in renewable energy and clean technology in India. The fund, named Green Growth Equity Fund (GGEF), was launched with an initial warchest of 240 million pounds shared equally by the British and Indian governments, the two firms said in a statement. The fund aims to increase its investment…

Total Pays $1.7 bln for French Electric Retailer

Acquisition makes Total major competitor for EDF; and they paid 30 pct premium on Direct Energie's last close. Oil company Total said it will buy a majority stake in French electricity retailer Direct Energie in a 1.4 billion euro ($1.73 billion) deal that beefs up its challenge to state-owned market leader EDF. The deal is part of Total's strategy to grow its low-carbon energy assets to 20 percent of total assets by 2035 from 5 percent today and comes as other global oil and gas majors also shift to more renewable energy and electricity.

OutSmart, Kongsberg Join Forces on Wind Energy

New management solution based on the Kognifai digital platform and ecosystem will be available for more than 400 European wind energy assets Photo  Kongsberg Digital

Independent wind asset operations management specialist OutSmart BV has selected Kongsberg Digital AS to provide an integrated management system on the innovative Kognifai digital platform and ecosystem. The sophisticated digital solution will be used to manage OutSmart’s extensive onshore and offshore wind turbine portfolio. OutSmart provides services to wind farm owners, fund managers, and wind project companies in Northwestern Europe to maximize the revenues of their wind assets.

Fortum Contracted to Raise Finland's Solar Power Capacity

Photo: Fortum

Finland's Fortum, a majority state-owned utility company, won a tender to increase Finland's total solar production capacity by nearly 30 percent, the firm said on Monday. Fortum will install a solar electricity system on rooftops of about 40 commercial buildings across Finland. Even though their combined output will be of only 10 megawatts (MW), the project will be the biggest ever of its kind in the Nordics. The total solar power production…

BP to Keep Carbon Footprint Flat into 2025

(File photo: BP)

BP to reduce CO2 emissions by 3.5 mln tonnes per year by 2025 even as it plans to sharply increase oil and gas output in coming years. BP said on Monday it will keep carbon emissions flat over the decade to 2025 even as its oil and gas ouput is set to grow, responding to rising investor pressure to help tackle climate change. The London-based company said it plans to reduce emissions of CO2 gases by 3.5 million tonnes by 2025 through higher production of gas…

ExxonMobil Resumes Production in Papua New Guinea

Natural gas environment and safety Photo ExxonMobil

ExxonMobil said that production of liquefied natural gas (LNG) has safely resumed at the PNG LNG project in Papua New Guinea following a temporary shutdown of operations after a severe earthquake occurred in the region on Feb. 26. LNG exports are expected to resume soon. One train is currently operating at the LNG plant near Port Moresby. The plant’s second train is expected to restart as production is increased over time. During the period that production was shut-in…

Algeria Seeks to Cut Energy Consumption After Oil Earnings Fall

Algeria is offering motorists incentives to more than double the number of cars running on natural gas by 2021 in an effort to reduce consumption of costly imported fuel amid strained public finances, officials said. The North African country has been struggling with a halving since 2014 of vital oil and gas revenues, which make up 60 percent of the budget and 95 percent of exports. It has banned imports of 900 items, frozen public hiring and development projects…

DTEK, CMEC to Build one of Europe's Largest Solar Projects

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Ukraine's largest private power producer DTEK and China Machinery Engineering Corp (CMEC) said on Friday they had agreed a joint project to build one of Europe's largest solar energy generators at a cost of 230 million euros ($282 million). The solar power station will be built in the central Ukrainian region of Dnipropetrovsk with a planned capacity of 200 megawatts (MW), making it the third largest in Europe in terms of potential output.

Solar Power Eclipsed Fossil Fuels in New 2017 Generating Capacity

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Chinese solar power led a record 157 gigawatts (GW) of new renewable energy capacity added worldwide last year, more than double the amount of new generation capacity from fossil fuels, a U.N.-backed report showed on Thursday. Globally, a record 98 GW of solar power capacity was installed last year with China contributing more than half, or 53 GW, according to U.N. Environment, the Frankfurt School-UNEP Collaborating Centre and Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

Vestas Taps Car Battery Know-how for Wind Power Storage

File Image: Credit Vestas

The world's largest wind turbine maker Vestas is tapping into experience from the car battery industry to try to address the challenge of using erratic wind and solar energy to meet a growing share of power demand. Energy storage is becoming increasingly important as production of renewable energy rises, because the wind might not blow or the sun shine during the peak hours when most consumers turns on their lights and appliances. In order to bring down cost of renewable energy and help grid operators balance intermittent output…

ABB Wins Dubai Solar Park Expansion Deal

ABB's Similar substation Photo ABB

ABB has won an order worth more than $90 million from Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA), the leading power utility in United Arab Emirates (UAE), to build the Shams 400 kV substation that will integrate solar power from upcoming phases of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum solar park into the city’s electrical grid. This will be ABB’s second substation for the park, exemplifying the company’s commitment to deliver reliable power to consumers and serve the building and infrastructure sector alongside utility and industry customers.

ReNew Power Buys Ostro Energy

Photo: ReNew Power

ReNew Power, backed by Goldman Sachs and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB), said on Monday it has acquired Ostro Energy Private Ltd, backed by London-based Actis LLP, in one of India's biggest renewable energy deals. ReNew did not disclose financial details, but two sources familiar with the matter said Ostro was acquired for an enterprise value of about 100 billion rupees ($1.54 billion), which includes debt and equity. The equity component of about 40 billion Indian rupees ($614.34 million)…

SoftBank, China's GCL Team Up for $930 mln Indian Solar Venture

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Japan's SoftBank Group Corp has agreed to launch a $930 million Indian joint solar energy venture with Chinese firm GCL System Integration Technology Co as part of its India solar investment roadmap. The venture will work on photovoltaic technology, which is used in solar panels. GCL will provide technology and SoftBank will assist in obtaining land and regulatory approvals, GCL said in a filing to the Shenzhen stock exchange dated Friday.

Global Carbon Emissions Hit Record High in 2017 - EIA

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Snap Happy)

Global energy-related carbon emissions rose to a historic high of 32.5 gigatonnes last year, after three years of being flat, due to higher energy demand and the slowing of energy efficiency improvements, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said. Global energy demand rose by 2.1 percent last year to 14,050 million tonnes of oil equivalent, more than twice the previous year's rate, boosted by strong economic growth, according to preliminary estimates from the IEA.

US Rejects EU Alternatives to Solar Safeguard Tariffs

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The United States has rejected European Union proposals for an alternative to U.S. safeguard tariffs imposed on solar power goods, the two trading powers said in a joint filing published by the World Trade Organization on Tuesday. They also said they had not reached any agreement on U.S. compensation for its tariffs, but they would monitor the impact on trade flows and continue discussions. Reporting by Tom Miles

Vattenfall Wins Dutch 700 MW Offshore Wind Tender

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Swedish utility Vattenfall has won the right to build a 700 megawatt (MW) subsidy-free wind farm in the Dutch part of the North Sea, the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs said on Monday. The Netherlands' government is among the first to offer a so-called zero subsidy tender for wind power, in which only bids that required no government support could compete for the two 350 MW slots known as Hollandse Kust I and II. Vattenfall beat Norway's Statoil and Germany's Innogy in the tender.

Sweden's Vattenfall to Cut 1,500 Jobs

Magnus Hall (Photo: Vattenfall)

Sweden's state-owned utility Vattenfall said on Monday it would cut 1,500 full-time positions among its employees and consultants by 2020 as part of a long-running drive to boost competitiveness and profitability. The announced job cuts form part of a 2 billion Swedish crowns ($244.62 million) cost-savings programme that Vattenfall announced a year ago. "The fact that we now show a positive financial result doesn't mean that we can rest on our laurels," Vattenfall Chief Executive Magnus Hall said in a statement.

Total Renewables Unit Targets Africa's Power-Starved Mining Sector

Photo: Total

Total's renewable energy unit said on Monday it had opened the world's largest solar-thermal hybrid plant in Burkina Faso, the first of what it hopes will be many projects supplying the African mining industry's growing need for power. Total Eren and Africa-focused independent power producer AEMP inaugurated Essakane Solar over the weekend, adding 15 megawatts (MW) of solar capacity to an existing 57-MW heavy fuel oil power plant at Toronto-listed IAMGOLD's Essakane mine.

Norway's Scatec Solar Says Three Projects Caught in South Africa Row

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Three solar plants planned by Norway's Scatec Solar were among 27 energy deals blocked by a South African court on Tuesday when it agreed to hear a legal challenge by a group loyal to ousted President Jacob Zuma, the firm said on Thursday. State utility Eskom had been due to sign the 27 deals, mostly for wind and solar from independent power producers. It would have been the first major investment package under President Cyril Ramaphosa, who replaced Zuma last month.

Inercom Says Up to CEZ to Decide on Bulgarian State Stake

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Bulgaria's solar energy producer Inercom said on Friday it will be up to Czech utility CEZ to decide whether to start talks between the companies and the Bulgarian state over a potential Bulgarian government involvement in the sale of CEZ's Bulgarian assets. CEZ has signed a contract with Inercom to sell it a power distributor in the Balkan country along with other assets, but the deal, estimated at about 320 million euros ($393 million) sparked public concerns over Inercom's ability to finance and operate strategic power assets.

Exxon Mobile Interested in Working in Algeria, Sonatrach CEO says

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U.S. oil major Exxon Mobil Corp has shown an interest in working in Algeria, the head of state energy firm Sonatrach said on Tuesday. "It is important to highlight that a big major Exxon Mobil has shown an interest to come to Algeria," Abdelmoumen Ould Kaddour told reporters, without giving further details. He also said he had resolved 80 percent of the state firm's disputes with foreign firms, while Sonatrach had been able to fulfil gas supply contracts with Europe this winter despite rising domestic demand.

U.S. Energy Storage Market Could Triple this Year

File Image: CREDIT SAFT

U.S. deployments of energy storage systems will nearly triple this year thanks to sharply lower costs and state policies that support the case for installing batteries in homes, businesses and along the power grid. That forecasted growth of 186 percent to 1,233 megawatt-hours of storage from 431 MWh compares with the 27 percent increase in 2017, according to a report by GTM Research and the Energy Storage Association trade group published on Tuesday.

RWE Seeks Bigger Market Share in Croatia

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German energy group RWE aims to lift its market share in Croatia to 10 percent, the head of the company's Croatia business said on Friday, adding that the country's energy authorities need to do more to encourage sector investment. State power company HEP dominates Croatia's electricity sector with 85 percent of the market, while RWE commands a 7 percent share of the electricity market and 5 percent in gas. "We aim to reach 10 percent in both gas and electricity markets in the mid-term…

Dutch Plan to Build Giant Offshore Solar Power Farm

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An offshore seaweed farm in the North Sea will be turned into a large solar power farm that aims to pipe energy to the Dutch mainland in roughly three years. The project comes at a critical time for the Netherlands, which is struggling to curb fossil fuel use and meet greenhouse gas emission targets after years of underinvestment in renewable energy sources. After an initial pilot next year, a consortium comprising energy producers, scientists and researchers plans to ultimately operate 2…

US Could Unwind Wind, Solar Restrictions on Federal Lands

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The administration of U.S. President Donald Trump is considering changes to a plan that set aside areas for renewable energy development in the California desert, a move it says would promote more wind and solar projects on federal lands. The U.S. Bureau of Land Management, in a statement on Thursday, said it would consider amending the Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan as part of a broader federal effort to unwind regulations that impede energy development.

Shell in Buying Spree for Clean Energy

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Tomasz ZAjda)

Shell spends $400 mln in recent weeks on renewables, power. Royal Dutch Shell has spent over $400 million on a range of acquisitions in recent weeks, from solar power to electric car charging points, cranking up its drive to expand beyond its oil and gas business and reduce its carbon footprint. The scale of the buying spree pales in comparison to the Anglo-Dutch company's $25 billion annual spending budget. But its first forays into the solar and retail power sectors for many years shows a growing urgency to develop cleaner energy businesses.

Coal Delays Seasonal Price Decline

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Carolyn Franks)

It's getting to the time of year when a seasonal decline in thermal coal prices in Asia is to be expected as winter's demand peak passes - but so far the power station fuel is defying gravity. The price of spot cargoes of thermal coal from Australia's Newcastle port, a regional benchmark, ended at $108.75 a tonne on Jan. 19, within touching distance of the $109.50 reached on Jan. 17, which was the highest in a year. The price has rallied…

India Will Need at Least $125 Bln to Fund Renewables Dream

India will need at least $125 billion to fund its ambitious plan to increase the share of renewable power supply in the country’s grid by 2022, a top government official told Reuters, underlining the immense financing challenge ahead. The South Asian nation is one of the world's most important growth markets for renewable energy. Millions of Indians are not yet linked up to the power grid but as the country of more than a billion people prospers, it is experiencing surging demand.

Clean Energy Investment Rose to $333.5 Bln in 2017

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New clean energy investment worldwide rose by 3 percent last year to $333.5 billion from a year earlier, driven by a surge in solar photovoltaic (PV) installations, research showed on Tuesday. The figure is below 2015's record amount of $360.3 billion, Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) said in an annual report. Solar investment totalled $160.8 billion in 2017, up 18 percent from the previous year even though technology costs have fallen. Just over half of that was spent in China, the research showed.

Shell to Acquire 43.8% Interest in Silicon Ranch

(Photo: Silicon Ranch)

Royal Dutch Shell Plc said on Monday it would acquire a 43.8 percent stake in the solar company Silicon Ranch Corp from investment manager Partners Group, as part of its new energies power portfolio.   Shell said it has signed another agreement with the privately held company, which provides it the chance to raise its stake in Silicon Ranch after 2021.   The deal is expected to close in the first quarter of this year, the company said.     (Reporting by Divya Grover in Bengaluru Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)

Statkraft in Talks with Firms to Set up Data Centers in Norway

Norwegian power firm Statkraft is negotiating with U.S. and other companies to build large data centers in its home country, favored by a recent change in Norway's tax system, the state-owned utility told Reuters on Thursday. Unlike its Nordic neighbours, which have attracted large data center investments from big-data firms such as Apple , Alphabet, Facebook and Hive Blockchain, Norway has not yet cashed in on the trend. Known for its cheap…

Solar Modules Stuck at Indian Ports Due to Import Duty Dispute

Solar modules worth more than $150 million are stuck at various Indian ports due to a dispute over their classification and the import tax applicable to them, sources said, which could delay Prime Minister Narendra Modi's clean energy goals. Modi has set an ambitious target of nearly tripling the country's total renewable energy capacity to 175 gigawatt (GW) by 2022, spurring global firms including Japan's SoftBank and Goldman Sachs to invest in solar projects in the country.

Some Investors Sense Opportunities in Big Oil

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Kasto)

Link between oil prices and energy stocks disrupted; uncertainty remains over crude revival, electric car effect. Investors are gaining confidence - up to a point - that 2018 will be the year of oil stocks. While shares in top energy companies have risen since mid-2017, they have failed to keep step with recovering crude markets, opening up a historically unusual performance gap. Big oil stocks have also underperformed broader equity indexes.

Vestas 'Pleased' US Tax Bill Retains PTC Phase-out

Photo: Vestas

Vestas, the world's top wind turbine manufacturer, said Thursday it was "pleased" the final U.S. tax bill retains a phase-out of production tax credits, after concerns over the bill had shaved almost a quarter of its share price. The final U.S. tax bill retains the production and investment tax credits for wind and solar energy that have spurred investment in these industries. It also eliminates the alternative minimum tax, which would have reduced the value of those credits.

Statkraft Targets Onshore Wind, Hydropower After Offshore Wind Exit

Norwegian utility Statkraft will use some of the proceeds from its divestment of offshore wind parks to invest in onshore wind farms and hydropower plants, it said on Wednesday. On Tuesday the state-owned firm sold to a Chinese-led consortium its last stake in an offshore wind park, Britain's Dudgeon, bringing its total 2017 cash divestment proceeds to 1.2-1.5 billion pounds. "We have a plan to invest in maintaining our hydropower dams and build more renewables, such as solar and onshore wind.

Eni Strengthens Renewable Energy Ties with Sonatrach

Italian oil and gas group Eni said on Monday it had agreed a deal with Algeria's state-owned energy group Sonatrach to strengthen their renewable energy partnership in the country. Eni said in a statement a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU)signed by the two companies aimed at pinpointing areas at Sonatrach production sites where solar power plants could be built. The MoU was signed by Eni CEO Claudio Descalzi and Sonatrach Chairman and General Director Abdelmoumen Ould Kaddour.

Sonatrach Plans Closer Ties with Total on Energy Projects

Algerian state energy firm Sonatrach and Total are planning to work more closely together on offshore, petrochemical, solar energy and shale exploration projects, Sonatrach's CEO said on Wednesday. The CEO's comments signal a new chapter for the companies' efforts to cooperate on energy projects and show they have put behind them past disputes, including one in the mid-2000s over profit-sharing on oil and gas contracts. "Our relation with Total is good now. We will do a lot together including in shale, solar and offshore.

EDF Wants to Take Part in Saudi Nuclear Plans - CEO

French state-controlled utility EDF wants to take part in Saudi Arabia's plans to build nuclear power reactors, its chief executive told Reuters on Monday. Saudi Arabia, which wants to reduce oil consumption at home, is considering building 17.6 gigawatts of nuclear-powered electricity generating capacity by 2032 and has sent a request for information to international suppliers to build two reactors. Sources familiar with the situation said…

France Awards Climate Grants to U.S.-Based Scientists

Emmanuel Macron plans to award multi-year grants for several U.S.-based scientists to relocate to France, his office said on Monday on the eve of a climate summit hosted by the president to raise finances to counter global warming. Macron unveiled the "Make our Planet Great Again" grants after President Donald Trump in June said he was pulling the United States out of an international accord to reduce greenhouse gas emissions that was brokered in Paris in 2015. Macron repeatedly tried to persuade the U.S. leader to reverse his decision.

China's Giant Floating Solar Plant Goes Live

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China's Three Gorges Group started producing power from a 150-megawatt floating solar plant in east China, the largest of its kind in the world, official Xinhua news agency reported on Sunday. The solar power project in Huainan in Anhui province, developed by the new energy unit of state-run Three Gorges Group, is expected to be in full operation in May next year, the report said. The one-billion-yuan Huainan project is a new experiment aimed at cutting the cost of constructing and operating solar power plants…

FERC Seeks Delay of Coal, Nuclear Rule

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) carolyn franks)

The new chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission late on Thursday requested a 30-day delay on a decision on a plan promoted by Energy Secretary Rick Perry to subsidize aging nuclear and coal-fired power plants. Kevin McIntyre, a Republican, wrote a letter to Perry proposing to extend the deadline for a decision on the so-called Grid Resiliency Pricing Rule. Perry in September had issued FERC a directive to consider the rule and decide on it by Dec. 11.

Engie Plans to Go Green

French utility Engie plans to switch all of its gas operations to biogas and renewable hydrogen by 2050, making it 100 percent green, its chief executive said on Monday. The power and gas group has some 70 biogas projects worldwide, including 40 in France, and says that if all its projects get approval its annual investment in biogas could soar tenfold to hundreds of millions of euros per year. Engie, which has sold its fossil gas activities as part of a broader restructuring…

Pressured for Profit, Oil Majors Bet Big on Shale Technology

(File photo: ConocoPhillips)

Shale oil engineer Oscar Portillo spends his days drilling as many as five wells at once - without ever setting foot on a rig. Part of a team working to cut the cost of drilling a new shale well by a third, Portillo works from a Royal Dutch Shell Plc office in suburban Houston, his eyes darting among 13 monitors flashing data on speed, temperature and other metrics as he helps control rigs more than 500 miles (805 km) away in the Permian Basin, the largest U.S. oilfield.

J.v.G. Thoma Introduces the Automatic Robot-LayUp 2020

Photo: J.v.G. Thoma

Solar power specialists J.v.G. Thoma GmbH have completed a further automatic robot lay-up, the result of years of research and development by J.v.G. Thoma into the most efficient ways of harnessing renewable energy from the sun. The company is renowned in the field of photovoltaic energy production for their innovative DESERT+ technology solutions, with solar panels designed for use in extreme climatic conditions. Now, with the introduction of the 120 MW…

Norway's Arctic Oil Plan Violates Constitution, Lawsuit Says

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Norway's plan for Arctic oil exploration is unconstitutional because it violates the right to a healthy environment, a lawyer for Greenpeace and the Nature and Youth environmental group told an Oslo court on Tuesday. The case is the first of its kind in Norway and says a 2015 oil licensing round in the Arctic that gave awards to Statoil , Chevron and others violates the constitution. Norway signed the 2016 Paris accord, which aims to end the fossil fuel era this century.

Coal's Future Remains Uncertain

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Carolyn Franks)

A year after Donald Trump was elected president on a promise to revive the ailing U.S. coal industry, the sector’s long-term prospects for growth and hiring remain as bleak as ever. A Reuters review of mining data shows an industry that has seen only modest gains in jobs and production this year - much of it from a temporary uptick in foreign demand for U.S. coal rather than presidential policy changes. U.S. utilities are shutting coal-fired power plants at a rapid pace and shifting to cheap natural gas, along with wind and solar power.

Record Low Bid for 24/7 Block Mixing Wind and Solar at Chile Tender

Project Render (Photo: Verano Capital)

Verano Capital, an American project developer headquartered in Santiago, has announced that the 47 MW solar project they initially developed was selected in Chile’s latest energy tender with a winning bid at $25.38/MWh, the lowest 24/7 block price combining solar and wind ever recorded in the history of energy tenders. The winning bid was offered by a solar project which will be coupled with wind projects to offer a 24/7 supply over a 20-year period.

Coal to Become a Scarce Commodity?

file Image: An Asian coal berth (CREDIT: BMT)

The idea of coal as a scarce commodity seems somewhat preposterous given it remains one of the most abundant mineral resources on the planet, but the coming years may see a deficit in seaborne markets for the polluting fuel. The current debate surrounding coal is generally one of how long it will continue to play a role in the world's energy mix before it is replaced by cleaner alternatives, mainly renewables such as wind and solar. While various analysts will disagree on how quickly this process will occur…

TransCanada to Sell Ontario Solar Assets

Canadian pipeline operator TransCanada Corp said on Wednesday it would sell its Ontario-based solar energy portfolio to Axium Infinity Solar LP for about C$540 million ($426 million). The portfolio comprises eight facilities with a generating capacity of 76 megawatts. TransCanada, which operates the Keystone XL pipeline, said proceeds from the sale would help fund its C$24 billion near-term capital program.   Reporting by Ahmed Farhatha in Bengaluru

Plan to Support Coal, Nuclear Divides U.S. Energy Industry

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Carolyn Franks)

U.S. industries that rarely agree - gas drillers and renewable energy producers - urged a federal agency on Monday to dump a government directive to prop up ageing nuclear and coal plants, saying the electricity grid was already reliable. The split in the energy industry showed that a Trump administration push to make the country energy "dominant" by boosting output from every part of the sector may face hurdles. A group of 20 organizations…

BP Eyes Smaller Renewable Investments

BP is targeting smaller and wider-ranging investments in renewable energy to avoid large losses in the sector like those it suffered earlier in the decade, Chief Executive Bob Dudley said on Wednesday. BP and peers including Royal Dutch Shell and Total have recognised the need to reduce carbon emissions in the fight against global warming, but their investment in renewables remains tiny compared to oil and gas. "We're making smarter, in many cases…

World’s First Floating Wind Farm Starts Production

The Hywind Scotland floating wind farm. (Photo: Øyvind Gravås / Woldcam - Statoil ASA)

The world's first offshore floating wind farm has started to deliver electricity to the Scottish grid, providing power to approximately 20,000 households. The 30MW Hywind Scotland wind farm, operated by Statoil in partnership with Masdar 25 kilometers offshore Peterhead in Aberdeenshire, Scotland, was officially opened today by First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon. “This marks an exciting development for renewable energy in Scotland,” First Minister Sturgeon said.

Where's the Money? Oil Traders Ask as Peak Demand Looms

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Gear STD)

Traders still see opportunities in oil trading as Mercuria bets on power markets in U.S., China. For major trading houses that ship millions of barrels of oil every day, the prospect of diminishing fuel demand and a shift to renewable power poses a brain-racking challenge with few obvious solutions. "It is a very fair question - what the hell are we going to do?" said Ian Taylor, chief executive of the world's top oil trader Vitol, which trades seven percent of the world's oil. "It's not obvious.

US Solar Industry's Growth Region: Trump Country

Solar Panel AdobeStock / (c) 孤飞的鹤

President Donald Trump's administration has vowed to revive the coal industry, challenged climate-change science and blasted renewable energy as expensive and dependent on government subsidies. And yet the solar power industry is booming across Trump country, fueled by falling development costs and those same subsidies, which many Republicans in Congress continue to support. Data provided to Reuters by GTM Research, a clean energy market information firm, shows that eight of the 10 fastest-growing U.S.

Statoil Takes First Bite of Solar Market

(Photo: Scatec Solar)

Norway's Statoil is taking its first step into the solar sector on Wednesday, partnering up with Oslo-listed renewable energy firm Scatec Solar in a joint venture aiming to build several large-scale solar plants in Brazil. Bruised by pressure on oil prices over the last two years, European oil companies have been intensifying their expansion into renewable energy to seek new sources of revenue. With a 40-percent share in Scatec's construction-ready 162 megawatt Apodi farm and a 50-percent share in the project execution company…

Solar PV Grew Faster Than Any Other Fuel in 2016

New solar PV capacity grew by 50% last year, with China accounting for almost half of the global expansion, according to the International Energy Agency's latest renewables market analysis and forecast. For the first time, solar PV additions rose faster than any other fuel, surpassing the net growth in coal. Boosted by a strong solar PV market, renewables accounted for almost two-thirds of net new power capacity around the world last year…

Perry's Proposed Grid Rule Scrambles Energy Alliances

U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry's attempt to save the coal and nuclear industries by proposing a new grid resiliency rule is making for some odd bedfellows across the energy sector. The proposed grid resiliency rule threatens to turn two of the Trump administration's most loyal groups of supporters against one another, as the gas and coal industries square off for a fight over market share. The White House has celebrated the growth in domestic…

Amarenco Acquires Renewable Energy Developer Groupe Carré

Olivier Carré  (Photo: Groupe Carré)

Amarenco, an independent power producer based in Ireland, has announced its acquisition of Groupe Carré, a renewable energy project developers active in France. This acquisition supports Amarenco’s strategic objectives and strengthens its position in France’s promising wind and solar energy markets. Operating under the brand name Amarenco France, the new entity has the depth of skills, experience and financial girth to quickly become one of the main vertically integrated IPPs active in the country.

France Wins EU Nod for Renewable Energy Schemes

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) JJAVA)

EU state aid regulators approved on Friday four French schemes that will allow the country to produce more than 7.5 gigawatts in energy from onshore wind and solar, saying the projects were in line with EU competition rules. France aims to produce 23 percent of its energy from renewable sources by 2020. The European Commission said France will evaluate the schemes and brief regulators on the impact with an interim report in 2018 and a final one in 2022.