Controversy is mounting in Australia over whether the lifetime of AGL Energy’s 2,051-MW Liddell power plant should be extended – as proposed by the Turnbull government – even though the operator wants to shut down the “costly and unreliable” unit in 2022. A new report finds the government’s stipulated lifetime extension would cost around $3.6 billion over five years, compared to $2.2 billion for a combination of wind power, demand side-response and energy efficiency measures.

Between 2017 and 2021, mircrogrids are expected to progress from the test-bed and demonstration-phase to commercializing projects. According to GlobalData analysis, the value of global microgrid market will almost double from $12 billion in 2016 to around $23 billion in 2021, growing at an annual rate of about 14%.

Siemens’ Power and Gas (PG) division will be most affected by the Group’s latest round of restructuring which will affect 6,900 jobs, or 2% of the company’s global workforce and 6,100 jobs at Siemens PG. Global demand for large gas turbines, generating more than 100-MW, "has fallen drastically" and is "expected to level out at around 110 turbines a year," the German OEM stated. By contrast, the technical manufacturing capacity of all producers worldwide is estimated at around 400 turbines.

Total energy-related carbon dioxide emissions are projected to continue falling for the second year in 2017 but rise slightly in 2018, according to the EIA’s latest Short-Term Energy Outlook. Utilities in Texas and the Midwest are leading the way in cutting emissions by burning less burning coal. In both states a record number of coal-fired power stations were retired, or converted to natural gas.

LNG imports to Spain jumped 45% in October, spurred by rising demand from industry and the power sector which propelled up the country's total gas imports 29% year-on-year to an equivalent of 37.8TWh. According to data from the Spanish TSO Enagas, most LNG cargoes in October were imported from Nigeria, followed by Algeria.

Germany’s largest utility RWE on Tuesday reported a recovery in Q3 profits but warned of a quick exit from coal power to further reduce carbon emissions and reach Germany’s climate target, as demanded by the Green Party. Just days earlier, RWE said it is de-mothballing another two gas power plants ahead of the coming winter.

The Government of South Australia has evaded questions in Parliament about the cost of its new mobile power generators that have been installed and tested at Elizabeth and Londsdale. Rumours have it the final price tag might exceed $400 million but Premier Jay Weatherill refused to provided details, pointing to a confidentially agreement with the generator’s operator APR Energy.

“The boom years for coal are over” in the absence of large-scale carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS), according to the IEA’s World Energy Outlook (WEO-2017) just issued. Over the next 25 years, the world’s growing energy needs are met first by renewables and natural gas, as fast-declining costs turn solar power into the cheapest source of new electricity generation.

Reacting to pressure from investors, General Electric’s new CEO John Flannery announced plans to exit the locomotives and industrial lighting markets to focus on aviation, power generation and healthcare, while shedding 25% of its corporate staff. “Complexity has hurt us,” he said, adding GE needed “right-sizing” in its power segment to reduce costs.

China Energy Investment Corp has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (Mou) to invest up to $83.7 billion over the next 20 years in shale gas development and downstream gas markets in West Virginia. “Projects will focus on power generation, chemical manufacturing, and underground storage of natural gas liquids and derivatives," the U.S. Department of Commerce stated, adding planning for the projects "is underway."

Sino-Russian ties have warmed considerably under Xi Jinping and there is some synergy between Moscow's 'Pivot to Asia' and Beijing's 'Belt and Road Initiative', finds Hugo Brennan, Asia analyst, Verisk Maplecroft. Hence, the trade mission of U.S. President Trump to China might not be overly successful when it comes to selling US LNG. “The economics of US supplies to China are challenging,” he warned, suggesting “Chinese LNG buyers might find cheaper deals elsewhere.”

China and India will continue to lead world nuclear growth as their impetus is expected to offset declines in nuclear capacity in the United States, Japan, and countries in Europe. According to the EIA’s International Energy Outlook 2017 (IEO2017), global nuclear capacity will grow at an average annual rate of 1.6% from 2016 through 2040.

Fourth quarter revenue came in below target at Siemens, Europe’s biggest industrial conglomerate, while earnings dropped 10% to €2.2 billion – largely caused by its Power & Gas (PG) division and higher costs at its Digital unit. “For years now we’ve been seeing a steady decline in orders for large turbines owing to a booming renewable segment,” CEO Joe Kaeser told investors in Munich, announcing steps to “restructure and resize the business.”

Oversupply of LNG throughout Asia is boosting spot trade – a trend that has been strengthening the case for smaller and more distributed LNG receiving terminals for combined-cycle gas generation. Such projects, according Jim Schnieders, Black & Veatch’s Country Manager Indonesia, give operators “greater flexibility to manage peak and off-peak grid demands while advances in technology also allow a scale up for baseload generation.”

The UK’s “Big Six” energy companies may soon become five, if the agreed merger between SSE and Npower will be permitted by the regulator. SSE, the UK’s second largest energy supplier, confirmed it wants to combine its British domestic business with Npower, forming a new company.

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