News item | 2011-10-10 | 15:55 PM

Energy News Europe - week 40, 2011

Austria

Wien Energie yet to complete energy negotiations
Wirtschaftsblatt, 2011-09-29
Talks between Austria and Germany on the provision of additional electricity, should there be deficits in Germany after taking nuclear power stations out of operation, are continuing, with negotiations between Austrian energy company Wien Energie and the German federal network agency still ongoing. Austrian energy companies Verbund and EVN have already come to an agreement.
© Esmerk

Czech Republic

CEZ's nuclear power plans
Hospodarske Noviny, 2011-10-03
The new head of Czech CEZ, Daniel Dobes, says that the energy group plans a financial injection worth several billions of CZK in extension of life expectancy of the Dukovany nuclear power station, which is to end in 2025. A use of improved technology is also planned. In addition, Dobes expects that the first new unit planned at the nuclear power station Temelin could be in operation in 2012/2013 and the second one 18 months after. An operation of new power units of the Dukovany nuclear power station could be launched in 2030.

According to Dobes, a new power station, probably in Blahutovice, is likely to be built after 2030. All nuclear projects, however, could be jeopardised by the EU. When it comes to coal, it is likely that its share in power production will be decrease to 13% by 2020. New gas power station projects in Melnik, Usti nad Labem and Pocerady will account for only several units of percentage of overall consumption.
© Esmerk

Denmark

Energy sector welcomes government's green energy targets
Ingeniøren, 2011-10-05
The Danish energy sector welcomes the new government's new green energy targets which give the players in the market renewed hope that the targets are believed to finally result in a green change in the country. One of the targets include raising the share of wind energy of total electricity consumption to 50% by 2020. This is an increase on the former government's target of 42-43%.

According to the new government's policy programme for energy, electricity and heating are to be covered by renewable energy by 2035, and coal is to be outphased in Danish power stations and households by 2030 at the latest. The energy sector expects the new government to reach an energy agreement already before Christmas 2011 thanks to the explicit green perspective in the government's energy policy. The government states in its energy policy programme that it aims to put forward a "proposal for an energy agreement based on a combination of several energy savings, continued development of renewable energy including among other things rising consumption of wind energy in Danish electricity supply".
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Govt's wind energy plan requires investments worth more than DKK 40bn
Børsen, 2011-10-06
The new Danish government's plan for a doubling of wind energy production by 2020 will require investments of more than DKK 40bn (EUR 5.37bn USD 7.17bn). This is shown by estimates from the green Danish think tank Concito. The cost of these investments per household would be DKK 16,000. However, the Danish Climate and Energy Minister Martin Lidegaard stresses that the government will secure a broad financing for the investments so as not to burden any group unnecessarily.

The government's wind energy investments involve 500 new offshore and 600 onshore wind turbines as well as major investments in cables for transporting wind energy to consumers. The DKK 40bn investment does not include the cost of the wind turbines that are to replace used wind turbines that are to be outphased over the next eight years.
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Europe

Top players form EASE to promote energy conservation
Metering International, 2011-09-30
The European Association for Storage of Energy (EASE), a non-profit association will promote energy storage as a vital technology to help transition Europe towards a sustainable energy system. The association aims to build a platform to share information for stimulating the development of innovative energy storage applications and technologies.

EASE will support and promote the assessment and analysis of the advantages of energy storage in the energy grid. EASE will also work along with other international and national energy storage firms like the Electricity Storage Association in the US. The founding members of the association are Siemens, Saft SAS, RWE, RISØ, KEMA, Hitachi Power Europe, GDF SUEZ, E.ON, Enel, EnBW, EDF, DONG Energy and Alstom
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Finland

Fennovoima to build its nuclear power plant in Pyhäjoki
Helsingin Sanomat, 2011-10-06
Finnish power consortium Fennovoima has decided to build its nuclear power plant in Pyhäjoki in Finland. The choice was made between Pyhäjoki and Simo. Construction will most likely start in 2015. According to Fennovoima, the bedrock in Pyhäjoki is more solid, the length needed for cooling water tunnels is about one kilometre shorter in Pyhäjoki, and there are also very few permanent residents and summer houses near the power plant site. Also the risk of earthquakes is lower in Pyhäjoki.

The cost of the new nuclear power plant will be between EUR 4bn to EUR 6bn. The plant supplier will be chosen in 2012-2013. Alternatives are Areva and Toshiba. The issue of the end depository of nuclear waste has not yet been settled. Fennovoima would like to place its waste in Olkiluoto where Posiva, the company responsible for the disposal of spent nuclear fuel in Finland, is building a nuclear fuel depository. The owners of Posiva are power companies Teollisuuden Voima (TVO) and Fortum, and Posiva says the depository is being built for the waste requirements of these companies.
© Esmerk

France

Warning from EC over failure to fully transpose energy directives
Les Echos, 2011-09-30
The European Commission (EC) has issued France with a warning for having only partially transposed EU energy and gas directives, while the deadline to conform with European regulation was March 2011. EDF and GDF Suez still dominate the market. This is particularly true for electricity, where alternative suppliers have a 7% share of the market for businesses and a 5% share of the market for individuals.

The EC wants producers and network managers to be independent in order for the market to be more competitive, and wants consumers to be gradually equipped with individual meters. France was also warned over the fact it still does not have the equipment to circulate gas in both directions on an international level. Warnings over failure to transpose the electricity directives were sent to 17 countries and 18 countries received warnings for the gas directives. Failure to respond rapidly to the warning could eventually lead to the matter being brought to the European Court of Justice.
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Germany

RWE Effizienz offer payment by SMS
ZfK, 2011-09-29
Drivers of electric cars, which do not have a contract with the operator of a charging station, will benefit from a new offer of RWE Effizienz and Vodafone. From 2012, the more than 1,000 charging stations of RWE can be used via a payment system developed by RWE and Vodafone. Via SMS, the user informs RWE about charging station and charging time, and the electricity will be billed via the Vodafone telephone bill.
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RWE continues talks with Gazprom
Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 2011-10-07
Gazprom of Russia and RWE of Germany announced that they are to continue intensive and exclusive talks about an electricity generation joint venture until the end of 2011. In July 2011 the two signed a letter of intent on cooperation concerning hard coal and natural gas power stations in Germany, the UK, Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg. According to RWE chief Jürgen Großmann, Gazprom could acquire a just under 10% stake in the German company's power generation capacity.
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Hungary

Parliament passes long-term national energy strategy
Mfor, 2011-10-04
It has been revealed that the Hungarian Parliament has passed the country's national energy strategy. The aim of the step is to secure and sustain Hungary's energy supplies in the long term, to focus on competitiveness and environmental issues. In line with the strategy, the government intends to reduce Hungary's dependence from imports, increase the state's role in the domestic energy market and encourage developments.

The country also intends to focus on nuclear energy, renewable energy, its coal and lignite reserves and biomass production. In line with the strategy, action plans have to prepared regarding district heat development, energy-related R (research and development), the utilisation of assets and the development of power plants. Action plans are expected to be completed by the end of the first half of 2012.
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Netherlands

Green deal includes minimum green electricity supply
Het Financieele Dagblad, 2011-10-03
According to the Green Deal agreement between the Dutch energy sector and the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs, Agriculture and Innovation, energy companies will be subject to a minimum green energy supply percentage. The level of the minimum requirement, which will take effect from 2015, is not yet known.

The agreement also states that market power and excess profits for companies with coal power stations must be avoided. Companies without these power stations fear that those with will be easily able to add biomass to the coal while those without will be required to purchase green electricity. Minister Maxime Verhagen and the five companies with coal power stations have also agreed a minimum 10% biomass biomass addition to coal power stations between 2012 and 2014.
© Esmerk

Wind turbines to treble by 2020
NRC Handelsblad, 2011-10-03
According to the Green Deal agreement between the Dutch energy sector and Dutch Economic Affairs Minister Maxime Verhagen, the number of wind turbines in the Netherlands is to treble by 2020. The total capacity is to rise to 6,000MW. The agreement also concerns the installation of smart electricity meters in 80% of homes by 2020. By 2015 there must be at least 5,000 electric cars on Dutch roads.
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Spain

Torresol Energy to open EUR 250mn solar energy site in October
ABC, 2011-09-30
Torresol Energy, which is made up of Sener of Spain and Masdar of Abu Dhabi, has spent EUR 250mn (USD 339.92mn) on the thermal solar energy plant which is now covering land between Ecija and Carmona in the Spanish region of Andalucia. The energy generation site has a capacity of 20 MW and can supply 27,500 households. The pioneering technology it uses allows it to store energy and feed it into the grid 24 hours a day, all year round, regardless of when the sun is shining as it can continue producing electricity for 15 hours without sun. It use concentration technology in a receptor tower plus smelted salts as a storage system.

It will be officially opened on 4 October 2011. The plant avoids the need to import 28,600 tonnes of oil a year and cuts annual CO2 emissions by 30,000 tonnes. So far, Torresol Energy has invested EUR 940mn or so in Andalucia since 2008, as it has another two solar plants under construction with 50 MW capacity. These will start operating in 2012. Turnover from the three plants will come to over EUR 120mn in 2012. The firm also has projects in California (US) and the Persian Gulf.
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Sweden

Inspectorate publishes rules for CO2 details on electric bill
Nordisk Industri, 2011-10-05
The Swedish Energy Markets Inspectorate (Energimarknadsinspektionen) has published a report clarifying how electricity producers should label electricity to differentiate between the different production forms. Electricity bills must now include information about how much CO2 is emitted by non-labelled electricity, a figure that the Inspectorate is to calculate. A recent Sifo poll found that 60% of Swedes want information on their electricity bills about how the electricity is produced and 80% of young people say they will no longer choose non-labelled electricity within five years.
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United Kingdom

Longannet carbon capture storage project likely to be scrapped
Guardian, 2011-10-06
Scottish Power, National Grid and Shell are understood to be close to scrapping plans for a carbon capture storage development at Longannet power station, Europe's third largest coal-fired power plant at 2,400MW. The companies, which remain in talks with the Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) after completing a detail study of the project, fear the carbon capture storage scheme requires additional public funding to be commercially viable.

The companies are said to seeking more money than the GBP 1bn (EUR 1.15bn USD 1.54bn) already pledged by the DECC. An announcement regarding the scrapping of the scheme at the power station in Fife is expected within weeks.
© Esmerk

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