Sharp falls in oil prices, which dipped below $30/bl in January, remained the primary driver of gas contracts throughout the month. The summer 16 gas contract dropped 10.3% to average 29.3p/th, hitting a record low of 27.4p/th on 21 January. Furthermore, a strong UK gas supply outlook provided additional pressure, with global LNG capacity forecast to rise significantly in the coming years. Seasonal power contracts followed gas prices down, with summer 16 power slipping 7.5% to average £33.1/MWh, and reaching a new low of £31.4/MWh on 21 January. Seasonal gas and power contracts are now at their lowest levels since 2007. With oil prices forecast to fall further in 2016, gas and power contracts are likely to follow.
Spot gas and power prices experienced diverging trends in January. The day-ahead gas contract fell 6.0% to average 32.1p/th, hitting a near six-year low of 28.8p/th on 26 January. Falls came as increased supplies more than offset higher demand levels, which resulted from colder temperatures and reduced wind output. In contrast, day-ahead power rose 9.0% to average £37.4/MWh, hitting a nine-month high of £48.4/MWh on 18 January. Prices climbed as lower wind output and colder temperatures tightened supply margins during the month.
The Renewable Energy Association has published a new report that concludes that 2016 is going to be the breakthrough year for energy storage and the growth of decentralised energy in the UK.Despite a total of 13 ‘sudden and severe’ changes to the Government’s green energy policies since the 2015 general election – which have created significant uncertainty in the UK renewables industry – a new independent report by KPMG for the REA says that ‘we could enter an era of continued green growth and domestic decentralised energy
Following the UAE and China’s recent landmark agreement to collaborate on renewable energy innovation, the World Future Energy Summit announced today it will host its largest-ever Chinese business delegation.
As one of the world’s largest energy consumers, renewable energy investment in China could reach USD 145 billion per year to 2030, or USD 2.2 trillion in total, according to a recent report by the International Renewable Energy Association (IRENA).
Furthermore, China will account for nearly 40 percent of the world’s renewable energy capacity growth until 2020, according to the International Energy Authority.
The UAE and China are set to be key renewable energy players, with the two countries recently signing a partnership on sustainable development and renewable energy.
“Our largest-ever Chinese contingent represents new business opportunities for both Chinese renewable energy experts in the fast-paced Middle East and North Africa market, and for international investors in China’s strong renewable energy sector,” said Naji El Haddad, Group Event Director, World Future Energy Summit.
Under current EU legislation, businesses must demonstrate that they have made a compliant Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme (ESOS) assessment on or before 5th December 2015 to avoid being subject to a maximum penalty of £185,000.The Environment Agency (EA), which administers ESOS on the Government’s behalf, estimates that from the 14,000 enterprises that fall under the legislation, more than 35% have failed to notify the EA of their compliance by the closing date.Although the number of businesses effected by the legislation is usually believed to be around 14,000, ESOS experts suggest that the number that qualify may be far higher due to a startling lack of awareness about the requirement of businesses to comply.
Read More: ESOS Non-Compliant Business Penalty.
The boss of Aston Martin has announced plans for an electric car with between 800 and 1,000 horsepower, ideal for a new zero-emissions 007.
Andy Palmer said the move of all carmakers towards electric motors is inevitable and said his 102-year-old company is ready to make the switch instead of trying to meet ever-decreasing emissions targets.
“We’re a V12 engine company. Project that into the future. Do I go the way of the rest of the industry and downsize the engine? Do I see Aston Martin with a three cylinder engine? God forbid,” Palmer said. “You’ve got to do something radical. Electric power gives you that power. It gives you that torque.”
With regards to James Bond’s choice of vehicle, Palmer said an electric Aston would make “an awfully good getaway vehicle. I don’t think James really cares what the power train is as long as it’s fast and beautiful.”
Read Full Version – via 007 James Bond’s New Electric Car.
An ambitious project conceived by an Icelandic economist aims to connect Iceland and the UK with an undersea power cable, exporting electricity to Britain.The idea has been in the works for many years but has had its fair share of logistical problems.Both Prime Minister David Cameron and Icelandic Prime Minister Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson have assembled separate expert groups to weigh the pros and cons of the plan. The results of the investigations are expected to be released within the next six months.The project courted controversy in Iceland where it was feared the cable would lead to increased energy prices in Iceland and decreased jobs of Icelanders. However, Sigmundur was quick to assure people this would not be the case. Investor and economist Hreiðar Guðjónsson believes that Iceland might not even have to pay for the project at all.
Read More via Importing Icelandic Power.
The chance of an electricity blackout has risen to its highest in a decade and the National Grid has admitted that it is more likely to draw power from additional sources to try to keep the country’s electricity flowing.The operator said it had enlisted power stations to provide extra capacity and has asked companies across the UK to be ready to cut their usage in case of a peak in demand.The acquisition of additional capacity means that the situation should be manageable, according to National Grid. These extra measures will come at a cost of 50p extra per year for customers.The forecast capacity margin for this year, in simple terms the difference between available supply and expected peak demand, is 1.2% without any additional power plants. The number is its lowest since 2005. The added power brings the number up to 5.1% however.
Dale Vince, a pioneer of the UK renewable energy industry and founder of green energy company Ecotricity, has accused the British government of corrupting the market in an attempt to scupper green energy in favour of fossil fuels and nuclear power.The criticism comes as RenewableUK, the industry’s trade association, announced that 25.3% of the country’s electricity was produced by green energy sources in the second quarter of this year – more than coal (20.5%) and nuclear power (21.5%).Ecotricity supplies nearly 170,000 British customers with electricity generated by wind and solar power.Mr Vince is calling on the government to do away with the subsidies it grants nuclear power and fossil fuels in order to create an equal opportunities market, since it has decided to cut funding for renewable energy projects already.
Electric cars could drive from London to Edinburgh on a single charge using a new battery technology being developed at Cambridge Univeristy, scientists have said.The lithium-air technology could be used to develop batteries that are a fifth of the cost and weight of current electric car batteries – enabling them to match the range of petrol and diesel cars.Although real-world usage remains “at least a decade away”, scientists say they have overcome a number of obstacles to develop a working laboratory prototype of the battery.
UK small and medium-sized (SMEs) businesses are wasting more than £82 million per year on their energy bills.That’s according to new analysis from the Energy Efficiency Financing (EEF) Scheme which stated the overspending is due to inefficient technology and old equipment.The EEF scheme is a joint initiative between the Carbon Trust and Siemens Financial Services.They studied businesses’ use of lighting, heating and hot water, cooling and ventilation and other areas of energy consumption.The report concluded “potential” energy savings of more than £414 million could be achieved per year if they invest in more energy efficient equipment.Richard Baker, Sales Manager, EEF scheme said: “Today’s tightened credit environment makes it increasingly difficult for SMEs to obtain affordable funding as traditional lenders have become more risk-adverse in their lending policy.“Consequently, many firms feel discouraged from investing in green technologies because of insufficient access to capital. However, with funding available from innovative schemes like EEF, where expected savings pay for the investment, organisations can now act on their green endeavour without having to worry about upfront capital.”