THE FRIDAY NOTE: UK says yes to 1.2-GW offshore wind park and the rest of the week's top picks
Jul 12, 2013 - The wind power sector brought most of the top headlines this week including the UK’s nod for the 1.2-GW Triton Knoll offshore wind project and Pakistan’s 2.5-GW wind target by 2015, while on the solar front Gehrlicher Solar filed for insolvency.
On Thursday the UK government said it had given the thumbs-up to the 1.2-GW Triton Knoll wind project of RWE npower renewables, touted as the biggest offshore wind farm globally. German energy group RWE AG's (ETR:RWE) subsidiary is to erect 288 turbines off the coast of Lincolnshire, eastern England, to generate enough power for 820,000 households.
PAKISTAN EYES 2.5 GW OF WIND BY 2015, AGL PUTTS OFF 300-MW IN AUSTRALIA
Pakistan intends to set a 2.5-GW wind power capacity target by 2015, a spokesman of the Alternative Energy Development Board (AEDB) said Sunday. The government of the Asian country is betting on wind power as part of a plan to boost power generation.
While Pakistan is seeking for ways to support green energy, policy uncertainty in other markets is hurting the sector. Australian power producer AGL Energy Ltd (ASX:AGK) said Wednesday that it would put on hold the 300-MW wind project that it acquired in New South Wales over a year ago. The reasons for the delay include policy concerns related to the date of the federal election, the future of the carbon tax and an expected revision of Australia’s renewable energy goals.
To wrap up the wind sector TOPs, on Wednesday US utility Xcel Energy (NYSE:XEL) said that its unit Southwestern Public Service Co (SPS) intends to ink power purchase agreements (PPAs) for 700-MW of wind power capacity and is looking for approval in New Mexico. Two PPAs are for a 199-MW wind farm in Oklahoma and a 249-MW in Texas, both operated by NextEra Energy Resources. The third is for a 250-MW project in New Mexico of Infinity Wind Resources.
German firm Gehrlicher Solar AG on Friday filed for protection under the German bankruptcy laws, after it lost an EUR-85-million (USD 111m) loan due to “deterioration of market conditions in Europe” and punitive duties. In a statement on Tuesday the solar project developer and operator explained that the launch of anti-dumping duties on Chinese solar products affects hugely the European market and was the reason why the firm was no longer capable of meeting its business plan.
BP, DUPONT, AB SUGAR OPEN GBP-350M BIOETHANOL PLANT
Last but not least, British oil giant BP (LSE:BP) and partners AB Sugar and DuPont (NYSE:DD) on Monday celebrated the opening of the GBP-350-million (USD 530m/EUR 406m) Vivergo bioethanol plant in Hull, eastern England. According to the developer’s calculations, the fuel output would be enough to meet a third of UK’s bioethanol needs.