LONDON/PARIS (Reuters) – German utility E.ON’s breakup has led to worries that funds set aside for decommissioning reactors will not suffice, but globally the cost of unwinding nuclear is uncertain as estimates range widely.
As ageing first-generation reactors close, the true cost of decommissioning will be crucial for the future of the nuclear industry, already ailing following the 2011 Fukushima disaster and competition from cheap shale gas, falling oil prices and a flood of renewable energy from wind and solar.
LONDON/MILAN, Nov 28 (Reuters) – Falling crude oil prices
may boost European demand for oil-indexed gas next year, such as
pipeline gas from Russia, when its price is likely to fall below
Brent crude oil fell to an intraday four-year low of $71.12
a barrel on Friday, the day after OPEC decided not to cut
supply, which dragged down other energy prices.
LONDON/BRUSSELS, Nov 26 (Reuters) – A shortage of coal,
rather than gas, is likely to plunge Ukraine into freezing
darkness this winter as conflict in its east seals off supplies
that used to make it self sufficient.
Kiev has said any hopes it had of Russian coal coming to the
rescue were dashed when Moscow suspended exports.
LONDON, Nov 21 (Reuters) – Britain’s Office for Nuclear
Regulation (ONR) gave the go-ahead on Friday for EDF Energy to
restart three nuclear reactors over the next week which have
been off line since August for inspections necessitated by a
fault on a similar unit.
UK power traders have been monitoring the dates the reactors
will return to service because Britain faces tight electricity
supplies this winter due to the unexpected closure of some power
plants. There are currently nearly 5 gigawatts of nuclear
capacity offline due to planned and unplanned outages.
LONDON, Nov 19 (Reuters) – The European Union’s highest
court ruled on Wednesday that Britain’s courts have the
authority to order the British government to comply with EU
nitrogen dioxide limits as soon as possible, speeding up action
to tackle the air pollutant.
The case will now return to the British Supreme Court for a
final ruling next year and it is likely to order the government
to take action to meet limits in a much shorter timeframe than
LONDON, Nov 7 (Reuters) – The High Court on London rejected
on Friday a request by four British solar power companies for a
judicial review of a government decision to end a subsidy
programme earlier than planned, court documents showed.
In August the four companies, Solarcentury, Orta Solar, TGC
Renewables and Lark Energy, applied for a judicial review into a
government proposal to halt in 2015 instead of 2017, as
previously envisaged, a subsidy scheme for solar panel power
farms with a generating capacity of more than 5 megawatts.
LONDON (Reuters) – The sticking plaster Russia-Ukraine gas payment deal will unpeel in March with the intensity of the likely next row dependent on a judgement from a legal panel in Sweden.
The potential is there for a far more tangled dispute next year as unresolved issues resurface on the question of payment which determines gas supply for Ukraine and onward to Europe.
LONDON (Reuters) – British power producer Drax Group Plc (DRX.L: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) has secured forward power sales since the end of July even though trading conditions in energy markets have been challenging, it said on Wednesday.
A mild winter last year dampened demand for energy over the past year, causing prices for natural gas and coal to fall. This has pressured margins of many power plants operating in Britain and in Europe.
LONDON, Oct 31 (Reuters) – British wholesale gas prices for
the rest of this year fell on Friday after Ukraine and Russia
signed a deal that will see Moscow resume gas supplies to Kiev
this winter, while warm UK weather and high storage levels added
to the bearish tone.
Russia is Europe’s biggest supplier of gas and provides
around a third of the continent’s needs, pumping roughly half of
that via Ukraine. Some of this reaches Britain from continental
European storage sites.
LONDON, Oct 29 (Reuters) – Iran would take at least five
years to start exporting natural gas to the European Union if
sanctions were removed, industry experts said on Wednesday.
Last month, Reuters reported that the EU was increasing the
urgency of a plan to import natural gas from Iran, as relations
with Tehran thaw while those with top gas supplier Russia grow
chillier due to the Ukraine crisis.