UK: UK energy news is dominated by the EU calling for an enquiry into Hinkley Point nuclear deal. Ofgem, the UK electricity and gas regulator lays out plans for blackouts [ASTONISHING!]
World: Mexico passes law enabling foreign companies to explore for oil and gas; BP announces plan for new gas pipeline from Azerbaijan – Statoil reduces stake; Russia does deal with Ukraine on gas prices – protestors are suspicious; Warren Buffet orders $1 billion of wind turbines. 23 stories below the fold.
Hundreds of businesses could be paid to switch off their power between 4pm and 8pm on winter weekdays as soon as next winter to prevent blackouts, under plans approved by regulator Ofgem.
Mothballed old gas-fired power stations will also be paid to come back to stand-by so they can be fired up to prevent the lights going out when demand is high.
Statoil also enters an agreement to divest a 10% share of its 25.5% holdings in Shah Deniz and the South Caucasus Pipeline.
The BP-operated Shah Deniz consortium today announces the final investment decision for the stage 2 development of the Shah Deniz gas field in the Caspian Sea offshore Azerbaijan. This decision triggers plans to expand the South Caucasus Pipeline (SCPX) through Azerbaijan and Georgia, to construct the Trans Anatolian Gas Pipeline (TANAP) across Turkey and to construct the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) across Greece, Albania and into Italy. Together these projects will create a new Southern Gas Corridor to Europe. The total cost of the Shah Deniz stage 2 and SCP Expansion projects will be around USD 28 billion.
Australia is to become a global gas superpower by the middle of the decade and eliminate its current account deficit for the first time in almost 40 years, according to Morgan Stanley.
Mexico’s sweeping energy reform cleared its final legal hurdle Monday when San Luis Potosi became the 17th state legislature to give rapid-fire approval to constitutional changes that will allow foreign investment into what has been a 75-year-old state monopoly.
Statkraft is pumping NOK12bn (£1.2bn) into a drive to upgrade its ageing hydro plants in Sweden and its native Norway.
The company’s schemes have an average age of 45 years and a hydro plant is technically considered ready for retirement when it hits 50.
The refurbishment scheme is kicking off with a NOK1.7bn extension to the Nedre Røssåga facility in Norway’s Nordland County, where a 1600-tonne boring machine has started digging into the rocks to create new tunnels.
Leading academic journals are distorting the scientific process and represent a “tyranny” that must be broken, according to a Nobel prize winner who has declared a boycott on the publications.
Rupert Soames tells politicians to stop playing games with investors when country needs £200bn energy spend.
Britain has become a high-risk destination for energy investment thanks to the continual interference of game-playing politicians, the chief executive of temporary power supplier Aggreko has said.
European Union regulators are to investigate whether UK support for a plan to build a new nuclear power plant breaks state aid rules.
French energy giant EDF is leading a consortium building a £16bn plant at Hinkley Point in Somerset.
The UK government has guaranteed power prices from the plant for 35 years.
British consumers could pay £17bn in potentially unnecessary subsidies to fund construction of the country’s first new nuclear plant in a generation, the European Commission has said.
This article shows how generation and consumption of electricity varies across the four countries of the United Kingdom. It updates and extends that published in December 2012. The UK figures shown in the tables in this article are taken from the Digest of United Kingdom Energy Statistics (DUKES) 2013, Chapters 5 and 6 and so the definitions used are identical to those in the Digest.
I wish to inform the House that today the Government are publishing the Electricity Market Reform (EMR) Delivery Plan. As laid out in my 18 July statement, Official Report, column, 112WS, it was our intention to publish the final EMR Delivery Plan before the end of the year, subject to Royal Assent of the Energy Bill.
Ofgem Chief Executive, Andrew Wright, said: “Our latest assessment on security of electricity supplies published this summer showed that electricity margins are set to tighten more quickly than previously expected in the middle of the decade. This is mainly because older coal power stations will close sooner.
“Mothballed” gas-fired power plants could be used as a “last resort” in the event of a power shortage, under new rules.
New regulations, approved by regulator Ofgem will also allow the National Grid to ask more businesses to cut back on energy use during peak times in winter.
A record two fifths of electricity used in Scotland came from renewables last year, official figures have revealed.
Argentina on Thursday threatened to nationalise utility companies Edenor and Edesur after power outages blanketed large swaths of the capital and surrounding suburbs just ahead of the South American summer, according to reports.
Sigmar Gabriel will head a combined economy and energy ministry in Germany’s new coalition government with a focus on lowering energy prices and boosting industrial output while rebooting the energy transition.
A few of the stories from Tethra Energy
Ukrainian anti-government protesters demanded to know what President Viktor Yanukovych had ceded to seal $15 billion of Russian financial aid and a one-third discount on energy imports.
Russia will buy Ukrainian state debt this year and next and will cut the price it charges for natural gas to $268.50 per 1,000 cubic meters, President Vladimir Putin said after meeting Yanukovych in Moscow yesterday.
Chevron Corp plans to spend $39.8 billion on projects and exploration in 2014, the second-largest U.S. oil company said on Wednesday, as it finishes work on huge developments in Australia and the Gulf of Mexico.
BP will drill some 300 wells to flush gas trapped deep under the Omani desert over the next 15 years in a $16-billion (£9.8 billion) project that Oman is relying on to keep its economy growing.
According to a new research made by ExxonMobil, the world’s largest oil and gas firm, in about eleven years gas will be the world’s second main fuel on an energy-equivalent basis, only behind oil. Natural gas will surpass coal as a global energy source in part because of the green benefits it offers.
It expects that natural gas consumption will register an increase of about 65% by 2040, as new reserves had been discovered by technical progress enabling extraction from previously inaccessible rocks ( shale gas), and worry about pollution, including greenhouse gas emissions, which are encouraging the use of cleaner options to coal.
My Selection At The Edge of Time
U.S. crude oil production will approach a record by 2016, climbing to the highest level in 46 years as rising output from shale formations lifts domestic supplies, reducing the nation’s need for foreign oil.
The flood of North American crude oil is set to become a deluge as Mexico dismantles a 75-year-old barrier to foreign investment in its oil fields.
Utility company MidAmerican Energy Holdings Co., a subsidiary of Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc., has announced it’s ordering around $1 billion of wind turbines for wind power projects in Iowa, Bloomberg has reported.
A new report from leading utilities analysts at investment bank UBS suggests that energy utilities in Europe, north America and Australia are facing a “perfect storm” from the falling costs of renewables, energy efficiency and falling demand, and may not be able to sustain their business models.