Low Carbon Investment
More of the funds held by institutional investors would be invested in energy projects if there was a clear EU policy about how to deliver secure, affordable and low carbon energy, says the House of Lords EU Sub-Committee for Agriculture, Fisheries, Environment and Energy in its report, published today. Following an eight-month long inquiry, during which the Committee heard from a number of individuals and organisations including the European Commission, the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, Bloomberg New Energy Finance, the CBI, WWF and power companies, the Committee’s alarm at the degree of uncertainty and complacency about affordable, secure and low carbon energy supplies has grown.
House of Lords 2nd May 2013 read more »
Trillion euro shortfall facing EU energy sector says Lords Committee. Investment totalling a trillion Euros is required before the end of this decade if the European Union is to stave off an energy crisis. That is the conclusion of an eight-month inquiry by the House of Lords into the EU power sector. The Lords report says that a muddled Brussels energy policy is putting off big investors. In addition, it says there needs to be greater support for Europe’s emissions trading system (ETS).
BBC 2nd May 2013 read more »
Utility Week 2nd May 2013 read more »
Günther Oettinger says government’s plans to strike 40-year contracts for new nuclear plants with EDF are ‘Soviet’. Lawyers for the Becker Buettner Held consultancy in Brussels recently said that the UK’s CfD scheme for nuclear generators could not be deemed “compatible” with EU law under any current or possible future frameworks. Changes to the EU’s state aid guidelines could only occur after a consultation with other member states that would take up to two years, the consultancy said.
Guardian 1st May 2013 read more »
Back in February, energy campaigner Mark Johnston took a “tweet and be damned” approach at a European Energy Forum dinner to report the evening’s speaker, EU energy commissioner Gunther Oettinger, describing the UK’s nuclear policy as “Soviet”. This was a delicate time for UK-Europe energy policy, readers will recall, as EDF had recently announced it wanted a 40-year contract with the UK Government to support the Hinkley Point nuclear reactor in Somerset. So when Johnston turned up to the Energy Forum’s latest dinner last week – two months after his social media transgression – the forum’s president, Giles Chichester, told him he was “banned”.
Telegraph 2nd May 2013 read more »
A radioactive takeaway pizza has been delivered back home eight years late – but is still 24,392 years within its sell-by date. In 2005, anti-nuclear campaigners took the ‘Pizza Cumbriana’ as a protest to the Italian Embassy in London. Martin Forwood, of Cumbrians Opposed to a Radioactive Environment (CORE), made the pizza to highlight concerns over shipping Italian spent fuel to Sellafield for reprocessing. Placed in a traditional takeaway pizza box, it was marked with the nuclear waste danger sign and listed its ‘traditional Italian ingredients’ as ‘Caesium, Americium and Plutonium’
Daily Mirror 2nd May 2013 read more »
Recently, G4S security officers were presented with the prestigious BSIA Award for Best Regional Team (South West) in recognition of their work at the Hinkley Point C nuclear new build site in Somerset.
Source Security 1st May 2013 read more »
Ed Balls has launched one of his most vocal attacks to date on the government’s energy policy, arguing that billions of pounds of green investment and tens of thousands of jobs are being put at risk because of confusion over the coalition’s plans. Speaking at an event at the Port of Tyne earlier this week ahead of Thursday’s local elections, the Shadow Chancellor said the failure of the government to pass its Energy Bill and clarify the policy landscape for new energy projects had led to “really frustrating” delays in the emergence of green jobs in the North East and the rest of the country.
Business Green 1st May 2013 read more »
The government’s Department of Energy and Climate change has published its latest poll tracking public attitudes to energy and climate change. What does it tell us? Here are the five things to take away from it.
Energy Desk 30th April 2013 read more »
The European Parliament non-binding resolution that all safety improvements recommended following stress on nuclear reactors across the EU must be carried out urgently estimates EUR 25bn in reparations must be paid for by nuclear operators.
Nuclear Insider 1st May 2013 read more »
The nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT) preparatory review conference ends on Friday. It’s hard to escape the conclusion that the world’s nuclear powers have thrown away yet another opportunity to live up to the commitments they made under the treaty to disarm.
The coalition government in Britain is attempting to renew Trident – with Labour cheering it on. But Ed Miliband could benefit from revisiting the promises of a previous Labour government on nuclear weapons in the 1960s. Papers available in the National Archives at Kew show that on January 23 1968 Fred Mulley, then minister of state for foreign affairs, addressed the 358th plenary meeting of the 18-Nation Committee on Disarmament in Geneva. He was seeking to convince countries to sign up to the newly negotiated NPT. “My government accepts the obligation to participate fully in the negotiations required by article VI and it is our desire that these should begin as soon as possible and should produce speedy and successful results,” he said. “There is no excuse now for allowing a long delay to follow the signing of this treaty.” Forty-five years later we haven’t disarmed.
Morning Star 2nd May 2013 read more »
Operators of the San Onofre nuclear plant may decide to retire one or both reactors by year-end if regulators deny or delay a request to partially restart the plant, as outage costs surpass $700 million and uncertainties mount.
UT San Diego 30th April 2013 read more »
If an agreement is to be reached, we in the west need to recognize that Iran – with all its faults – is an independent nation with legitimate interests, and is a fully signed up member of the Non-Proliferation Treaty, with every right to enrich uranium. We also need to be clear about the facts. This is why in our book we have attempted to expose the myths, falsehoods and delusions that surround this grave and troubling subject. There is an argument of massive importance to be engaged in here.
Spectator 1st May 2013 read more »
Methil port north of Edinburgh, once the focus of Scotland’s coal exports, is set to tap a greener kind of energy as Samsung Heavy Industry Co. constructs the world’s biggest wind turbine in the town’s faded harbor. The 7-megawatt model with a span of 562 feet is being built in Methil because of its proximity to three North Sea sites that will accommodate almost one-fifth of the 5,000 new turbines the U.K. aims to erect in the world’s biggest wind-power program. Britain’s alternative-energy plans are reviving ports from Hull on England’s east coast to the Belfast docks in Northern Ireland that built the Titanic, boosting returns for investors including Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and paring costs for turbine builders and operators such as Siemens AG (SIE) and Iberdrola SA.
Bloomberg 2nd May 2013 read more »
British Gas, SSE and Scottish Power are among six energy firms to be investigated by the energy regulator Ofgem after failing to deliver enough energy efficiency measures to UK households. Under the Carbon Emissions Reduction Target (Cert), legislation which was in place until the end of 2012, the big six energy companies had to introduce measures such as installing insulation or switching a household’s heating fuel from oil to gas to help reduce UK carbon emissions. Under a separate smaller scheme, the Community Energy Saving Programme (CESP), the same suppliers had to deliver more complex energy saving measures to people in the most deprived areas of the country. Both British Gas and SSE failed to meet their targets under either scheme, ac cording to Ofgem, and Scottish Power missed its CESP target. Electricity generation companies GDF Suez/IPM and Intergen also missed both targets. E.ON, EDF Energy and npower, meanwhile, all met their obligations under both targets.
Guardian 1st May 2013 read more »
Bad weather has been blamed by Britain’s biggest power supplier for its failure to install sufficient insulation, glazing and other energy efficiency measures in thousands of Britain’s poorest homes. British Gas is under investigation by Ofgem for failing to reach efficiency targets and the industry regulator could fine it up to 10 per cent of its annual turnover after it carried out only 62.4 per cent of the measures required.Two of the other so-called “Big Six” energy suppliers also missed their targets under the £350 million Community Energy Saving Programme and face the same sanctions. ScottishPower undertook only 70 per cent of the work required and SSE recorded 90.9 per cent.
Times 2nd May 2013 read more »
British Gas is among six energy suppliers that have failed to meet government targets for helping customers reduce bills and cut emissions, the regulator said today.
Times 1st May 2013 read more »
Commenting on Ofgem’s report on CERT (Carbon Emission Reduction Target) & CESP (Community Energy Saving Programme), Energy and Climate Change Secretary Edward Davey said: “More than six million households are warmer and enjoying lower bills as a result of these schemes. “We have ensured mass mail-outs of light bulbs that went unused were banned and insulation rates were pushed to record levels. “But that was just the start. The new Green Deal and Energy Company Obligation go one better. They put choice in the hands of householders allowing them to cost effectively insulate their homes and keep bills down. The scheme also pumps billions into the sector. “We will be rigorously monitoring the energy companies to make sure the most vulnerable homes get the help they need.
DECC 1st May 2013 read more »
Ofgem Press Release 1st May 2013 read more »
Older and disabled people are put off the government’s flagship energy efficiency programmes because of their complexity and fear of taking on debt, unpublished government research shows. Focus groups commissioned by the Department for Energy and Climate Change (Decc) to assess the “perceptions” and “potential take-up” of the green deal and Energy Company Obligation (ECO) found significant concerns, a freedom of information request has revealed. The green deal facilitates loans – paid back via energy bills – to allow property owners to make energy-saving improvements. The ECO was introduced in January to work alongside the green deal to force energy companies to help low-income and vulnerable groups to make similar improvements. National Energy Action , a charity funded by Decc, conducted focus groups in March of “older people, families and households with disabilities and long-term health conditions”. The research found that “many of these households are struggling to heat their homes; they are concerned about taking on a debt/further financial commitment like a green deal in the current financial climate; they are put off by the complexity of the ECO; and they consider local authorities and voluntary organisations to be trusted sources of advice and information”.
Guardian 2nd May 2013 read more »
The fight over whether or not we should go fracking in the UK is getting a little dirty. With almost every journalist in Fleet Street geared up for the release of updated and significantly increased geological data on the amount of gas in rocks somewhere beneath Blackpool, the proxy war is well under way. Leading the charge for shale is the inimitable Peter Lilley, a Cambridge economics graduate last seen in politics as John Major’s Minister for Social Security and now, like much of the 1990’s, undergoing something of a revival. So what is he saying and is it right? The argument isn’t just between those who don’t like fossil fuels and those who do. It’s an argument about whether the evidence suggests it is smart to base energy policy on the potential of shale gas – or whether it doesn’t. It’s not one that’s going to end soon.
Greenpeace 30th April 2013 read more »
An energy policy based on buying off hostility to fracking by building badminton courts won’t keep our lights on.
Guardian 1st May 2013 read more »
Britain’s largest coal miner, UK Coal, is fighting for survival as it grapples with the consequences of the devastating fire that closed its biggest colliery. The firm refused to deny reports that it is seeking voluntary liquidation, which would allow parts of the business to continue trading, in order to avoid enforced liquidation and a full shutdown. Following the blaze at the Daw Mill colliery in March the company lost £100m of equipment, £160m of coal and ran up £35m in costs, making further restructuring inevitable. UK Coal said this week that it is holding talks “with a wide range of interested parties” over the future of its last two deep mines – Kellingsley in North Yorkshire and Thoresby in Nottinghamshire – as well as six open-cast mines i n north and central England. The company produced 7.3m tonnes of coal in 2011, helping generate 5% of the UK’s electricity.
Guardian 1st May 2013 read more »
Telegraph 1st May 2013 read more »
Independent 2nd May 2013 read more »
FT 30th April 2013 read more »
Despite brutal conditions, an army of energy companies has converged on the region west of Shetland, lured by its vast deposits of oil and gas. The area holds around 17 per cent of the UK’s remaining hydrocarbon reserves, with enough gas to meet 8 per cent of the country’s needs by 2016. For Britain, increasingly worried about its reliance on imported gas, the exploration of these waters is a critical strategic issue. The oil industry has been pumping crude from the North Sea for nearly 40 years but the easy oil and gas is nearly all gone. What remains is increasingly difficult and costly to extract. Some of it is heavy, viscous crude that must be heated or chemically treated to make it flow, or oil that is boiling hot and at dangerously high pressure. Or it is in remote locations like the north Atlantic west of Shetland.
FT 1st May 2013 read more »