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Daily Energy News

Policy & Regulatory

The government of Slovakia has initiated its first technology-neutral renewable energy auction to allocate 30 MW of power generation capacity. Successful projects ranging from 100 kW to 2 MW for PV and from 500 kW to 10 MW for non PV will be awarded 15-year feed-in premium payments on top of the wholesale electricity price, with ceiling prices respectively of €84.98/MWh for solar and wind projects and €106.80/MWh for other technologies.

The government of Japan has adopted a bill to revise the electricity business law, which intends to secure power in time of disaster, after some parts of the country experienced massive and prolonged power outages in the wake of natural disasters. The text would force power companies to develop contingency plans on working with other utilities, local governments and the Self-Defence Forces.

Montenegro has issued a decree to implement its recently adopted (December 2019) legislation on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, passing the framework for GHG emission permits, for auctions, and for the transfer of emission credits. The decree specifies which large industrial emitters should take part in a new emission trading scheme (ETS) and determines the total amount of emission credits to be auctioned at a minimum price of €24/tCO2.

The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), China’s state planning agency, has requested power grid companies to reduce their participation in the capital of power trading exchanges to less than 80% by the end of June 2020 and to less than 50% by the end of December 2020. The NDRC aims to liberalise the power sector and expand electricity market trading.

Companies

The British power group Drax intends to stop using coal at its 3,960 GW Drax coal-fired power plant in North Yorkshire (United Kingdom) in March 2021. However, the group will ensure the availability of its two remaining coal-fired units until September 2022, when its existing Capacity Market agreements terminate.

In 2019, Endesa's installed power capacity in Spain increased by 647 MW to 23,365 MW, as the group commissioned 557 MW of wind capacity and 339 MW of solar PV and retired 227 MW of coal-fired power capacity. The group generated 61 TWh, i.e. 17% less than in 2018, due to a 31% fall in hydropower generation, partly offset by a higher production from nuclear (+9.2%) and CCGT power plants (+43%).

The Competition Commission of India has approved NTPC’s acquisition of the majority stakes held by the Indian Ministry of Power in two power generation companies: NTPC will acquire 100% of North Eastern Electric Power Corporation (NEEPCO), which operates hydropower, thermal (gas-fired) and solar power plants in the north-east of India and 74.5% of THDC India, which operates 1,400 MW of hydropower plants (including the 1,000 MW Tehri-1

Energy & Climate Markets

The Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) of Japan has allowed the Japanese power utility Tohoku Electric Power to restart the 796 MW Onagawa-2 boiling water reactor (BWR) in the Miyagi Prefecture. Additional authorisations are required, as well as the assent of local authorities, which is not certain. The nuclear regulator has approved a report stating that countermeasures applied at the plant are meeting revised safety standards.

Forecasts

The Algerian government aims to reach 4 GW of renewable power capacity by 2024 and 16 GW by 2035. The previous objective was to reach 22 GW of solar capacity by 2030. The country is currently lacking electricity and gas supplies in some areas and the development of solar plants is expected to guarantee cheaper retail energy prices. Turning to solar power would help Algeria meet the growing demand for electricity and save 240 bcm of gas production for export purposes.

Infrastructure & Investments

The government of Kazakhstan has selected the local company GPC Invest to build a US$860 gas processing facility near the Kashagan oil and gas field. Developed in partnership with the North Caspian Operating Company (NCOC), the project will use gas from the Kashagan oil field and will have a capacity of 1 bcm/year.