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The in-depth study, which analyses hydrogen’s current state of play and offers guidance on its future development, is being launched by Dr Fatih Birol, the IEA’s Executive Director, alongside Mr Hiroshige Seko, Japan’s Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, on the occasion of the meeting of G20 energy and environment ministers in Karuizawa, Japan.

Hydrogen can help to tackle various critical energy challenges, including helping to store the variable output from renewables like solar PV and wind to better match demand. It offers ways to decarbonise a range of sectors (including long-haul transport, chemicals, and iron and steel) where it is proving difficult to meaningfully reduce emissions. It can also help to improve air quality and strengthen energy security.

A wide variety of fuels are able to produce hydrogen, including renewables, nuclear, natural gas, coal and oil. Hydrogen can be transported as a gas by pipelines or in liquid form by ships, much like liquefied natural gas (LNG). It can also be transformed into electricity and methane to power homes and feed industry, and into fuels for cars, trucks, ships and planes.

To build on this momentum, the IEA report offers seven key recommendations to help governments, companies and other stakeholders to scale up hydrogen projects around the world. These include four areas:

  • Making industrial ports the nerve centres for scaling up the use of clean hydrogen;
  • Building on existing infrastructure, such as natural gas pipelines;
  • Expanding the use of hydrogen in transport by using it to power cars, trucks and buses that run on key routes;
  • Launching the hydrogen trade’s first international shipping routes.

 

The report notes that hydrogen still faces significant challenges. Producing hydrogen from low-carbon energy is costly at the moment, the development of hydrogen infrastructure is slow and holding back widespread adoption, and some regulations currently limit the development of a clean hydrogen industry.

Today, hydrogen is already being used on an industrial scale, but it is almost entirely supplied from natural gas and coal. Its production, mainly for the chemicals and refining industries, is responsible for 830 million tonnes of CO2 emissions per year. That’s the equivalent of the annual carbon emissions of the United Kingdom and Indonesia combined.

Reducing emissions from existing hydrogen production is a challenge but also represents an opportunity to increase the scale of clean hydrogen worldwide. One approach is to capture and store or utilise the CO2 from hydrogen production from fossil fuels. There are currently several industrial facilities around the world that use this process, and more are in the pipeline, but a much greater number is required to make a significant impact.

Another approach is for industries to secure greater supplies of hydrogen from clean electricity. In the past two decades, more than 200 projects have started operation to convert electricity and water into hydrogen to reduce emissions.

Expanding the use of clean hydrogen in other sectors – such as cars, trucks, steel and heating buildings – is another important challenge. There are currently around 11,200 hydrogen-powered cars on the road worldwide. Existing government targets call for that number to increase dramatically to 2.5M by 2030.

Policy makers need to make sure market conditions are well adapted for reaching such ambitious goals. The recent successes of solar PV, wind, batteries and electric vehicles have shown that policy and technology innovation have the power to build global clean energy industries.

WindEurope, Cefic (the European Chemical Industry Council) and EUCIA (the European Composites Industry Association) have created a cross-sector platform to advance novel approaches to the recycling of wind turbine blades.

In 2018 wind energy supplied 14% of the electricity in the EU with 130,000 wind turbines and this number will only grow in the coming decades. Wind turbines blades are made up of a composite material, which boosts the performance of wind energy by allowing lighter and longer blades.

In the next five years 12,000 wind turbines are expected to be decommissioned. Broadening the range of recycling options is critical for the industry’s development.

Wind energy is an increasingly important part of Europe’s energy mix. The first generation of wind turbines are now starting to come to the end of their operational life and be replaced by modern turbines. Recycling the old blades is a top priority, and teaming up with the chemical and composites industries will enable to do it the most effective way.

The chemical industry plays a decisive role in the transition to a circular economy by investing in the research and development of new materials, which make wind turbine blades more reliable, affordable and recyclable.

Learnings from wind turbine recycling will then be transferred to other markets to enhance the overall sustainability of composites.

Construction works from SENER power plant to Gondi Group.

Mexico City, Mexico, July 10, 2019 – The SENER engineering and technology group has signed a contract with Gondi, a leading Mexican group in the manufacture of paper for cardboard packaging, to build phase 1 of a steam and electricity service plant in Guadalupe Nuevo León (Mexico). The facility is designed to supply electricity, steam and cold water to the most modern paper plant in the country.

Phase 1 involves a steam plant with two boilers and an electric substation, which is scheduled to go into operation in early 2020. There is a future option to execute Phase 2 to develop the cogeneration scheme in 2021-2022.

Under this contract, signed as a turnkey or EPC (engineering, procurement and construction) contract for Phase 1, SENER will be responsible for the basic and detailed engineering, the overall procurement of materials, general project management, construction and start-up, as well as for training the operations personnel for two backup boilers.

SENER has extensive experience in the Mexican energy sector, where it has implemented 29 projects in the combined cycle and cogeneration, oil, gas and mining sectors, 16 of them of the EPC or turnkey variety. Specifically, in cogeneration, SENER led the construction of one plant for Cryonfra-Afranrent, two for the CYDSA group, a fourth for Alpek and a fifth, called TG-8 Madero, for Pemex, all of them as EPC construction contracts.

With offices in the country since 2006 and employing a multidisciplinary team of more than 400 Mexican professionals, SENER develops engineering and technology projects in the areas of Infrastructure and Transport (such as the passenger train between Toluca and México City, Guadalajara Metro Line 3, the General Hospital of Mexico and various works in Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) throughout the country, for clients such as SCT, BANOBRAS and CAPUFE), and Renewables, Power, Oil & Gas, with, in addition to the aforementioned cogeneration plants, contracts such as the Agua Prieta II combined cycle plant, the La Cangrejera petrochemical plant and the diesel hydrodesulphurization units at the refineries in Tula and Salamanca for PEMEX, the Empalme I combined cycle plant and the compressor stations in Frontera and Los Ramones for Gasoductos del Noreste.

Source: SENER

The GoodWe inverters have been installed this year on a large 1MW project in the city of Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina. The purpose of this project is to provide clean electricity from solar to an approximate of 1000 new house units, involving as well thermal and water pumping. This installation is part of a large urban improvement project in one historical neighborhood of low income of the Argentinian capital.

Due to a proved record of successful installations all over the world, the GoodWe proposal, consistent on more than 100 pieces of DT inverters of 10kW (suitable for use on commercial) were selected as the best choice in a fierce competition by one of the most reputed Argentinian EPC companies. This project is now owned by the city government and it was partly funded by large international organizations that typically have an extremely demanding criteria for the selection of suppliers. According to Wood Mackenzie, last year GoodWe became the 7th largest PV inverter supplier in the world, making the company a powerful candidate for this kind of projects.

GoodWe has accumulated a rich experience in projects aimed at alleviating poverty in isolated communities of China, in which the company inverters help local dwellers generate the electricity they consume and have additional income from the sale of surplus to the grid. This Argentinian project is technically different but it has the common element that solar is also a practical tool for raising the living standards of the population and in the process, making urban spaces more livable.

The area of the installation is located at a historical part of Buenos Aires where the population used to live in crowded spaces. It was not rare to see in this region illegal plugging into the grid, creating a significant burden for the local government. Thanks to the better housing that is being constructed along with these brand new GoodWe solar installations, the situation is starting to improve, allowing the inhabitants of that neighborhood to generate a large portion of the electricity they need. This project is a sort of pilot program that has the potential to be replicated in other countries.

The GoodWe DT model is an inverter specially designed for use on commercial and industrial rooftops but it is deployable in residential projects. The majority of the DT models installed on this project are of 10kWs capacity and the reasons behind their selection in Argentina have to do with their low weight, which is 30% lighter than equivalent products from competitors, and the high efficiency they can reach. The customer has also reported been impressed by the GoodWe’s SEMS monitoring system that allows operators to see in an accurate manner the power generated by the system.

Another happy aspect of this project is the fact that it is based in Argentina, a country that has experienced a remarkable growth in the demand for solar energy over the past years, consolidating its ranking as the fourth largest PV market in Latin America. The energy industry of Argentina has undergone profound adjustments which have encompassed the approval of new regulations that incentivize the expansion of solar. For GoodWe, Argentina has become a strategic market and the company remains committed to preserve the trust gained and to keep expanding the brand across the vast Latin American region.

Source: GoodWe

Despite significant progress in recent years, the world is falling short of meeting the global energy targets set in the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) for 2030. Ensuring affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all by 2030 remains possible but will require more sustained efforts, particularly to reach some of the world’s poorest populations and to improve energy sustainability, according to a new report produced by the International Energy Agency (IEA) the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD), the World Bank and the World Health Organization (WHO).

Notable progress has been made on energy access in recent years, with the number of people living without electricity dropping to roughly 840 million from 1 billion in 2016 and 1.2 billion in 2010. India, Bangladesh, Kenya and Myanmar are among countries that made the most progress since 2010. However, without more sustained and stepped-up actions, 650 million people will still be left without access to electricity in 2030. Nine out of 10 of them will be living in sub-Saharan Africa.

Tracking SDG7: The Energy Progress Report also shows that great efforts have been made to deploy renewable energy technology for electricity generation and to improve energy efficiency across the world. Nonetheless, access to clean cooking solutions and the use of renewable energy in heat generation and transport are still lagging far behind the goals. Maintaining and extending the pace of progress in all regions and sectors will require stronger political commitment, long-term energy planning, increased private financing and adequate policy and fiscal incentives to spur faster deployment of new technologies.

The report tracks global, regional and country progress on the three targets of SDG7: access to energy and clean cooking, renewable energy and energy efficiency. It identifies priorities for action and best practices that have proven successful in helping policymakers and development partners understand what is needed to overcome challenges.

Here are the key highlights for each target. Findings are based on official national-level data and measure global progress through 2017.

Access to electricity: Following a decade of steady progress, the global electrification rate reached 89 percent and 153 million people gained access to electricity each year. However, the biggest challenge remains in the most remote areas globally and in sub-Saharan Africa where 573 million people still live in the dark. To connect the poorest and hardest to reach households, off-grid solutions, including solar lighting, solar home systems, and increasingly mini grids, will be crucial. Globally, at least 34 million people in 2017 gained access to basic electricity services through off-grid technologies. The report also reinforces the importance of reliability and affordability for sustainable energy access.

Clean cooking: Almost three billion people remain without access to clean cooking in 2017, residing mainly in Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa. This lack of clean cooking access continues to pose serious health and socioeconomic concerns. Under current and planned policies, the number of people without access would be 2.2 billion in 2030, with significant impact on health, environment, and gender equality.

Renewables accounted for 17.5% of global total energy consumption in 2016 versus 16.6% in 2010. Renewables have been increasing rapidly in electricity generation but have made less headway into energy consumption for heat and transport. A substantial further increase of renewable energy is needed for energy systems to become affordable, reliable and sustainable, focusing on modern uses. As renewables become mainstream, policies need to cover the integration of renewables into the broader energy system and take into account the socio-economic impacts affecting the sustainability and pace of the transition.

Energy efficiency improvements have been more sustained in recent years, thanks to concerted policy efforts in large economies. However, the global rate of primary energy intensity improvement still lags behind, and estimates suggest there has been a significant slowdown in 2017 and 2018. Strengthening mandatory energy efficiency policies, providing targeted fiscal or financial incentives, leveraging market-based mechanisms, and providing high-quality information about energy efficiency will be central to meet the goal.

Source: IEA, IRENA, UNSD,World Bank, WHO

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Rolls-Royce has signed a contract with EPC contractor TTS Martin, s.r.o. for the supply of a 28 MWe power plant for state-owned utility Martinska teplarenska, a.s. in Slovakia. The plant will be equipped with three Rolls-Royce Bergen B35:40V20AG2 natural gas engines and four hot-water boilers, replacing their entire existing coal operation. As well as electricity, the engines and boilers will supply over 28 MW of heat to most of the 60,000 population of the cities of Martin and Vrutky.

Martinska teplarenska heating plant is currently using mainly low-quality lignite for heat production – which is both low-output and non-ecological. Especially in the conditions prevalent in the Martin region – which is surrounded by mountains and unable to dispel pollution – it is crucial to look for the most effective, most ecological solutions for heat and power production.

The upgrade of the district heating plant is part of Martinska teplarenska’s strategy towards green, sustainable power supplies and the winding-down of their coal operations. They made a strategic decision to invest in gas-fuelled reciprocating engines and gas boilers as a more long-term solution than exhaust gas aftertreatment systems to reduce the emissions given off by coal-fired power plants. The B35:40 gas series meets the increasingly stringent emissions requirements, with exceptionally low emissions of NOx, CO and UHC combined.

The new Martinska teplarenska plant is planned to go into commercial operation at the beginning of 2020, and will be Rolls-Royce’s second power plant using B35:40 Bergen gas engines in Slovakia. The first will under commissioning in May 2019, generating a total of 37 MWe of heat and power for district heating company Teplaren Kosice, a. s.

Rolls-Royce medium-speed engines are designed flexibly for different operating modes, and can be used to generate base-load, peak power or operate in combined cycles. By utilizing hot water from the engines, the plant will be used for district heating in the surrounding area. Heat from the engines can also be used to produce steam in the heat recovery steam generators in order to supply industrial customers if required.

ABB’s Power Grids business has been awarded an order from the Aibel/Keppel FELS consortium, which will design, construct, and build the High Voltage Direct Current (HVDC) transmission system for the offshore wind connection project DolWin5. ABB is the HVDC technology provider. This project will deliver 900 megawatts of zero-carbon electricity – enough to power around 1 million homes – from three wind farms some 100 km off the German coast. It is scheduled for completion in 2024.

The order includes the converter platform in the North Sea, as well as an on-shore converter station located in Emden, in the Lower Saxony region of Ger-many. TenneT, a leading European electricity transmission system operator, with activities in the Netherlands and in Germany, is responsible for providing power links to the offshore wind farms in this cluster.

ABB’s HVDC solution is used to transport the power generated by offshore wind farms very efficiently by converting the alternate current (AC) to direct current (DC) on the converter platform. That makes it possible to transmit the power through a 130-kilometer-long DC cable system with very low losses to the mainland. In the onshore converter station, the power is converted back to AC and then integrated into the transmission grid. ABB HVDC’s offshore wind connection solutions are compact and modular to specifically address the challenges of the offshore wind industry and support a substantial improvement in LCOE (Levelized Cost Of Electricity), as well as carbon foot-print.

With the use of ABB’s voltage source converter technology, commercialized under the name HVDC Light®, it is possible to keep the conversion losses very low. Additionally, the order will also include the ABB Ability™ Modular Advanced Control for HVDC (MACHTM), which is instrumental in controlling the complex connection between wind farms and the on-shore AC grid.

As part of its energy transition (“Energiewende”), Germany’s plans to generate 65 percent of its power from renewable sources by 2030. A rapidly growing pro-portion of this clean energy is generated in huge offshore wind farms in the North Sea. In just 10 years, Germany’s offshore wind production has grown from zero to 6,382 MW, making it the world’s second largest offshore wind pro-ducer after the UK.

Source: ABB

European electricity markets

Since April 1, prices in Europe have had certain stability. The rise in the CO2 emission price was offset by lower gas and coal prices and also by the slight decrease in electricity demand due to the better weather conditions in spring, with somewhat higher temperatures and more hours of sunshine in this 40-day period. The price fluctuations in this period are mainly due to variations in wind energy production, especially in Germany and Spain, which are the European leaders generating energy with this technology. In the case of Germany, prices could have been stable at 40 €/MWh but when there was a lot of wind they fell below this value, even reaching negative values on April 22 at 14 €/MWh. In the Spanish electricity market, fluctuations in wind energy production caused prices in the band between 40 €/MWh and 60 €/MWh. Also in this period of 40 days there were fluctuations in temperature and in solar energy production.


Electricity futures

The prices of European electricity futures for the third quarter of 2019 increased in most markets between 0.3% and 1.6% on Friday, May 10, compared to Friday of previous week. In the case of the OMIP market of Spain and Portugal, as well as the MTE market operated by GME, they remain unchanged, while the UK futures decreased in both the ICE and EEX markets.
In the case of futures for 2020, the increase was more widespread between 0.5% and 1.4%. Only the MTE market operated by GME remained unchanged and the UK’s ICE and EEX markets declined, as did the future for the third quarter of this year.

Wind and solar energy production

In the second week of May, the wind energy production had an increase in the main European markets except in Germany with a drop of 3.3%. The increase in France was 58%, in Portugal 99%, in Spain 36%, and in Italy 37%.
For the current week, the third of May, a decline in wind energy production is forecasted after the rise of the previous week. The most pronounced fall is expected in Italy and Portugal, somewhat less in Spain and France, and even a slight increase in Germany.

As for solar energy production, which includes photovoltaic and solar thermal technologies, during the second week of May fell by 4.3% in Germany, while in Spain the fall reached 20% with respect to the previous week. For its part, in Italy the previous week registered an increase of 5.3% in the solar energy production.
For the current week it is expected a decrease in solar energy production in Italy of about 20%, while in Germany and Spain the trend is expected to be bullish between 15% and 20%.

 

Source: AleaSoft

The Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) in Mexico and the SENER-OHL consortium have signed the Provisional Acceptance Report for the Empalme I combined cycle plant, located in the municipality of Empalme, in the State of Sonora (Mexico).

The turnkey or EPC (Engineering, Procurement and Construction) project consisted of building a combined-cycle plant with a guaranteed net capacity of 770 MW, and includes a cooling water intake facility for the Empalme I and II plants.

The plant has the following components:
• Two gas turbines.
• Two heat recovery steam generators.
• One steam turbine.
• Cooling water intake facility with dual 1,000 m long, 3.2 m diameter ducts and a 3.2 m diameter, 1,200 m long discharge duct.

The 445 million euro (477 million dollar) contract, awarded in 2015, was defrayed using the PIDIREGAS (Spanish acronym for Production Infrastructure Investment Project with Deferred Registration of the Expense) private financing model.

This facility features cutting-edge technology that makes it one of the most efficient in CFE’s portfolio. It uses an innovative system to produce electricity in a way that is more environmentally friendly, which will no doubt improve the quality of life in surrounding communities, and in the northwest of Mexico as a whole. It is estimated that 7.5 million man-hours of work were generated thanks to this project, much of that done by the local workforce.

Source: SENER

For most people, their personal energy revolution begins with the installation of a PV system on the roof of their home. This allows them not only to cover their domestic energy needs, but also to make use of the entire spectrum of options offered by energy sector integration thanks to the intelligent solutions from Fronius Solar Energy. The ultimate goal is to power an entire household exclusively from self-generated solar energy, which can also be used to heat water and for e-mobility. This helps to increase the rate of self-sufficiency and to more efficiently utilise the PV system. When it comes to e-mobility in particular, it is important to have a suitable overall concept comprising a PV system, energy storage system, hot water generation and a wallbox – in other words, a domestic charging station for electric cars, bringing a new level of meaning to ‘solar power’.

A personal energy revolution involves exploiting the entire spectrum of energy sector integration. Optimum energy management enables the highest possible rate of self-sufficiency to be achieved with self-generated solar energy. This increases profitability and the rate of self-consumption while simultaneously reducing costs. Alongside electricity and heat, mobility is the third major sector that can be powered with electricity from a user’s own roof using solutions from Fronius.

If you own an electric car, you’ll want to power it with solar energy,” explains Martin Hackl, Global Director Solar Energy at Fronius. “But you’re often not at home when the electricity from your domestic PV system is available.” This is where Fronius comes in: the solar energy experts are taking e-mobility to the next level and are making it possible to charge an electric car in the afternoon or evening with the electricity stored throughout the day. “It’s about having an energy solution that guarantees an electric car really is fuelled with green electricity,” adds Hackl. “To achieve this, you need to get the entire package right.

Fuelling a car with green electricity

Owners of electric cars essentially have three ways of charging their vehicles. The easiest, yet most ineffective method, is to simply plug the car into the socket or wallbox when power is required and use the energy available at that moment. This often only enables the user to achieve a slight increase in self-consumption, as a large proportion of the electricity needed is drawn from the public grid.

To charge the electric car’s battery intelligently, a Fronius inverter with an integrated energy management function and a compatible wallbox (charging station for the home) is required alongside the PV system on the roof. The inverter informs the wallbox when there is surplus electricity available, which then charges the electric car. Self-consumption can typically be increased by a further 20% in this way.

Dynamic charge control (the car is charged with precisely the amount of surplus electricity that is available at the given time) and an additional Fronius battery raise the rate of self-consumption up to almost 100%, depending on the system size and consumption behaviour. With this method, the energy management system sends the surplus electricity that has been produced throughout the day to a Fronius Solar Battery for temporary storage until it is later needed to fuel the car with solar power.

This ingenious method enables users to really get the most out of e-mobility,” says Hackl. “If you also upgrade your system with a Fronius Ohmpilot, which draws on surplus electricity to generate hot water, you will have a solution that makes the most economic sense and achieves the highest level of self-sufficiency.

Source: Fronius

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