Combined cycles in the international market: a great opportunity for Spanish companies

Termocentro combined cycle plant. Photo courtesy of Duro Felguera

It is not a good time for combined cycles in Spain; the Spanish fleet of combined cycle plants, with an installed capacity of 27,206 MW is, according to official data, underutilized.In 2013 the contribution of combined cycles to coverage of mainland demand was under 10%, according to data published by REE. According to the 2013 Progress Report on the Spanish electricity system, in this same period combined cycle production fell dramatically from the previous year, down 31.8% (including both mainland and island cycles).

This same document indicates a decrease in the coverage of demand in 2012, when the figure stood at 14.1%, however if we go back a few years ago, the figures speak for themselves: in 2008, combined cycle plants produced 32% of the electricity consumed in Spain.

Today the space occupied by thermal generation combined cycle hardly reaches an average of 20% capacity; in 2008 cycles ran at over 55%.

Article published in: FuturENERGY March 2014