Capacity Market could open up to renewables

Capacity Market could open up to renewables

Renewable energy generators could be allowed to compete for Capacity Market contracts as part of a review of the mechanism launched by the UK Government.

The Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has opened a “call for evidence” (CfE) to gauge the industry’s views on the idea.

BEIS suggests that wind or solar farms combined with battery storage – not necessarily on the same site – could be allowed to compete for contracts under the Capacity Market which was...

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Labour pledges more sustainable energy system

Shadow Business Secretary Rebecca Long Bailey has committed the Labour party to sourcing 60% of the UK’s electricity from zero-carbon or renewable sources by 2030.

In a speech at wind turbine makers Hutchinson Engineering in Widnes, Bailey said the next Labour government would invest in green infrastructure in the regions to rebalance the economy away from the financial sector.

She reiterated the opposition party’s pledge to nationalise energy companies to deliver renewable energy and...

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Government and trade body defend smart meter project

Ministers and industry leaders have responded to accusations that the rollout of smart meters won’t deliver the benefits it has promised.

Lawrence Slade, Chief Executive of trade body Energy UK, and the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) have each issued defences of the project.

Writing in a blog on his organisation’s website, Slade said: “Inaccurate billing is by far the number one driver of complaints in the energy sector and smart meters get rid of that at a...

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Regulator consults on network funding requests

Ofgem has proposed cutting the amount of money that network companies will be able to charge their customers for carrying out a series of projects.

Under the watchdog’s suggestions, National Grid, Wales & West Utilities and Cadent will only be allowed to recover £90 million for improving resilience to physical and cyber security threats, managing street works, and compensating landowners for work on gas pipelines.

The three companies had originally requested £114m to cover the costs.

The ...

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Centrica raises prices for second time

British Gas-owner Centrica has blamed a 20% rise in wholesale costs for a second price hike to its standard variable tariff (SVT) for domestic customers.

The company’s SVT, which closed to new customers on 31 March, will increase by 3.8% from 1 October, adding £44 to an average dual fuel bill to take it to £1,205.

The increase comes on top of a 5.5% rise announced in April.

Mark Hodges, Chief Executive of Centrica’s consumer arm, said: “We understand that any price increase adds extra...

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Subsidies for mini-nuclear power stations urged

Ministers should subsidise the construction of small nuclear power plants using a similar system to the support offered to offshore wind farms, according to a new report.

The document from the Expert Finance Working Group (EFWG), which was commissioned by the UK Government, said small modular reactors (SMRs) could be operating as early as 2030.

Proposed SMRs range in cost from £100 million to £2.3 billion, typically delivering less than 600MW.

The report said: “The UK Government should...

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14/08/2018 - Sector Round Up

Foresight acquires solar portfolio

Fifteen solar farms with a combined capacity of 114MW have been bought by the Foresight Solar Fund for £47 million.

London-listed Foresight raised £48.1m in July to fund the acquisition.

Further due diligence is being carried out on a further three solar farms identified as potential targets alongside the 15 that have already been bought.

> See Foresight Solar's statement


Low-carbon energy storage initiative gets go-ahead

The University of South...

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Over 100 MPs back net-zero emissions target

Support is growing in parliament for the UK to reach net-zero emissions before 2050 in order to satisfy its commitments under the Paris agreement.

More than 100 Members of Parliament and in excess of 50 peers have now signed a letter, which was originally sent to Prime Minister Theresa May in June by the Climate Coalition.

“A net zero emissions target, fully implemented, will cut energy bills by improving the efficiency of our homes and businesses, it will get rid of the exhaust pipe...

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Surge in corporate green energy buying

Business energy users are buying more renewable power than ever, according to new figures.

A report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF) found that companies and public organisations have committed to buy 7.2 gigawatts of clean energy worldwide so far this year, significantly higher than the 5.4 gigawatts record figure achieved during the whole of 2017.

The report said that in some global markets renewable energy was now the cheapest source of electricity.

It also said that companies are ...

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Roadmap for gas security after Brexit urged

A report from the UK Energy Research Centre (UKERC) has called for the UK Government to outline its plans for gas supplies following the country’s exit from the European Union (EU).

The document urged ministers to lay out a post-Brexit roadmap, including how the interconnectors that bring gas from Belgium and the Netherlands will be regulated if the UK leaves the EU Internal Energy Market.

Investment in the UK’s gas infrastructure is currently mired in uncertainty due to Brexit and climate...

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