02/10/2018 - Sector Round Up

Investors offered chance to back onshore wind

Arena Capital Partners, a Dublin-based developer and investor in renewable energy, is refinancing its E2 Energy portfolio of eight wind turbines in the north of England using the Abundance Investment crowdfunding platform.

The company – which has more than 70 turbines spread across Great Britain, Northern Ireland and Italy – will use the cash to buy more turbines and develop further projects.

The 16-year investment is offering a return of 5%.

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Coal ‘comeback’ could threaten carbon emissions progress

Great Britain’s carbon dioxide emissions from electricity generation have risen by 15% after rising gas prices led to a switch back towards coal in recent weeks, according to researchers.

The cost of gas has reached a ten-year high, prompting power station operators to use coal-fired plant instead of lower-carbon gas plants according to research for the Electric Insights report carried out by Imperial College, London.

The amount of electricity generated by burning coal fell to a record low of...

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Labour reiterates nationalisation pledge

The Labour Party has repeated its pledge to put the UK’s transmission and distribution networks back into public ownership.

Ahead of its party conference taking place in Liverpool this week, the party published a new document - ‘The Green Transformation’ – setting out its latest energy and environment policies.

It also said it would remove the barriers to new onshore wind which it said had been put in place by the Conservative government".

The party stressed that given the fast-changing nature...

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Leadership needed to reap low-carbon rewards of hydrogen economy

Central government and industry must act together to provide leadership on the development of hydrogen infrastructure, a new report has said.

The Policy Exchange think tank said leadership must be targeted at lowering the cost of sustainable hydrogen production, with Scotland and Northern England identified as the most suitable sites.

Long-distance lorries hauling freight offer the best short-term opportunity for utilising hydrogen.

Hydrogen produced by electrolysers powered by “spare” wind...

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Governments need to raise carbon prices says OECD

Few countries are increasing their carbon prices at a fast enough rate in order to meet their Paris Agreement commitments, according to a new report.

The Organisation for Economic Cooperation & Development’s (OECD’s) “Effective Carbon Rates 2018” study found that it will take until 2095 for carbon prices to meet real costs at the current rate of progress.

The carbon pricing gap – which compares actual carbon prices and real climate costs – has fallen from 83% in 2012 to 76.5% in 2018.

The...

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Shift in energy tariffs could lead to low carbon boost

Changing the price of energy tariffs could encourage a switch from gas boilers to low-carbon heating, a new study has suggested.

The Energy Systems Catapult and the University of Oxford looked at whether or not the fixed charges within energy bills – for network, environmental and social costs – are efficiently distributed between the standing charge and unit (per kWh) price of electricity and gas tariffs.

They found that the current arrangement of fixed and volumetric charges within...

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Green project loans have lower defaults – Moody’s

Bank loans for green infrastructure projects have a lower default rate, according to a report by credit ratings agency Moody’s.

Green projects have a ten-year default rate of 5.7%, compared to 8.5% for non-green projects.

Kathrin Heitmann, a vice president and senior analyst at Moody's, explained: “Our analysis of thousands of project finance bank loans examined various industry sectors that align with our definition of infrastructure.

“We further split the data into green and non-green...

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25/09/2018 - Sector Round Up

New chairman confirmed at Ofgem

Dr Martin Cave has been confirmed as the new chairman of Ofgem and will take up his position on 1 October.

He has previously served as Economic Adviser to Ofcom between 2003 and 2006. Dr Cave has also been appointed to lead several high profile reviews within government.

> See Ofgem's statement

 

Finalists named in Energy Awards

SmartestEnergy is among the finalists in the Supplier of the Year category at this year’s Energy Awards.

The winners of the awards,...

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UK wind hits 20GW milestone

Wind generation capacity in the UK has hit the 20GW mark, enough to meet the annual power needs of more than 14 million homes.

The landmark total was reached after the opening of Ørsted’s 659MW Walney Extension off the coast of Cumbria earlier this month.

Industry body RenewableUK said the figures highlighted the huge contribution now being made by wind but also reiterated its call for the UK Government to allow future onshore projects to compete for contracts.

RenewableUK’s Executive Director...

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Renewables to account for 80% of electricity by 2050

Wind, solar and other forms of renewable energy will supply 80% of the world’s electricity needs by 2050, according to a new report.

Falling costs mean solar is expected to account for 40% of electricity generation, with wind chipping in a further 29%, the “Energy Transition Outlook 2018: Power Supply and Use” report by Norwegian risk management firm DNV GL said.

The rapid electrification of transport and manufacturing means electricity’s share of total energy demand is predicted to hit 45% by...

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