LONDON, Dec 9 (Reuters) – Britain’s coal-fired power
producer Drax opened its coal-to-biomass conversion
plant on Monday as part of a 700 million pound project to clean
up emissions from the country’s biggest coal power station.
Drax secured financing at the end of last year enabling a
700 million pound ($1.1 billion) investment plan involving a
switch to using wood pellets instead of coal, which produces
more carbon for generating electricity than wood pellets.
LONDON, Dec 5 (Reuters) – Britain will be Europe’s only
electricity market to see rising wholesale prices in 2014 as
declining supply and government intervention drives prices up,
Credit Suisse said on Thursday.
Wholesale power prices in many European markets, such as
Germany’s, have dropped by up to 40 percent in the past three
years due to low demand growth coupled with a boost in renewable
capacity triggered by generous government green subsidies.
LONDON, Dec 4 (Reuters) – British lawmakers rejected an amendment on
Wednesday that would have forced tougher rules on old coal-fired power plants,
sparing the energy market from an even tighter squeeze as ageing nuclear plants
shut later this decade.
The amendment would have extended the so-called emissions performance
standard (EPS) to cover old and inefficient coal plants, as well as new ones,
unless they were fitted with costly carbon capture and storage technology.
OSLO/LONDON, Nov 29 (Reuters) – Norway’s Statoil is open to
discussing its gas contracts with customers, its CEO said on
Friday, a day after ENI’s chief said it may demand as much as
$10 billion from Statoil in what may become the biggest case yet
over long-term deals.
Europe’s biggest gas suppliers, Russia’s Gazprom
and Statoil, have seen a backlash in recent years from
cash-strapped European buyers locked into long-term supply deals
that have costly links to the oil price.
LONDON, Nov 28 (Reuters) – Italian natural gas prices shot
up on Thursday as a steep increase in demand left the system
undersupplied, requiring imports from northern Europe where
prices were also high due to cold weather and reduced Norwegian
Italian gas prices for delivery the next day rose by over 30
percent between Wednesday and Thursday to 40 euros ($54.30) per
megawatt-hour (MWh) at 1255 GMT (1355 CET).
LONDON, Nov 28 (Reuters) – Northern European use of
liquefied natural gas (LNG) to fuel ships is becoming feasible
as supply from Qatar to the Dutch port of Rotterdam becomes
available, but for it to compete with oil in transport its price
has to fall considerably.
New regulation on sulphur emissions in the shipping sector
will come into place for much of the North and Baltic Sea in
2015, sparking interest in alternative fuels to diesel and many
see LNG, currently used almost exclusively for power generation,
as a viable alternative.
LONDON/FRANKFURT, Nov 27 (Reuters) – German parties have
agreed to limit the growth of renewables and reform
controversial incentives for the sector by next summer in a move
to slow the rise in electricity costs for households and give
big utilities more time to adapt their business models.
Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives and the centre-left
Social Democrats (SPD) clinched a coalition deal early on
Wednesday that puts Germany on track to have a new government in
place by Christmas.
LONDON, Nov 20 (Reuters) – Thermal coal prices will rise in
the medium term as current prices force many producers to export
at a loss and because booming electricity demand in Asia will
drive up the market, said mining major Glencore Xstrata.
Thermal coal prices have dropped around 40 percent in the
last three years as healthy exports from major producers such as
South Africa, Australia, Colombia and the United States have
clashed with modest demand following the global financial
HELSINKI, Nov 13 (Reuters) – Baltic government officials
warned that plans around the region to expand the use of natural
gas to replace dirtier fuels will stall if no new supplies are
found to help to bring down prices.
The region relies heavily on pipeline imports from Russia,
which are not price competitive with fuels such as coal for
electricity generation and oil in the shipping sector.
LONDON/PRAGUE, Nov 12 (Reuters) – Central and south eastern
Europe will bear the brunt of any halts of Russian gas supplies
through Ukraine this winter but the region will not be caught as
unprepared as in 2009 when thousands went without heat in
A contract dispute between Kiev and Moscow spurred Russia to
shut a pipeline serving central and south eastern Europe in
2009, leaving hundreds of thousands of people without heating in
freezing temperatures and forcing businesses to shutter.