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World’s only floating nuclear power plant gets ready to connect to Russian grid
World’s only floating nuclear power plant (FNPP) AkademikLomonosovis expected to start injecting electricity to Russia’s power grid next year, ushering a new era in global nuclear power industry. Built by Russia’s Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corporation Reactorof Unit-1 has successfully gone through the  first stage of its  power start-up , last week ( December10) in Murmansk of Russia, said a press release. Power start-up is a series of functional and safety tests to be conducted on AkademikLomonosov’s reactors, before connection to the grid.  At the first stage the reactor was tested at 1-10% of its capacity and at the final stage it will be tested at 110%. During each stage, various operation modes are tested in order to ensure the safety of the power plant. “The floating nuclear power plant is an ideal solution for power supply to remote areas. We consider this project as a new product, which is of interest not only for the grid-isolated Russian Arctic regions, but also for a number of countries around the world,”said Alexey Likhachev, CEO of Rosatom State Atomic Energy Corporation. “Today we are demonstrating to our potential partners referential technologies in the field of small nuclear power reactors. I am sure that the growing demand for this product will bolster Russia’s leading position in theworld’s nuclear technology market.” Likhachev added. All the tests are likely to be completed by March 2019 and in the second half of the year, the FPU will be towed to its final destination-port of Pevek of Chukotka, extreme north-eastern region of Russia to replace the Bilibino Nuclear Power Plant. A FNPP is basically a mobile, low-capacity reactor unit, designed for operation in remote areas, isolated from the main power distribution system, or in places hard to access by surface. They are capable to maintain both uninterruptible power and desalinated water supply in remote areas. The AkademikLamonosov has a total capacity of 70MW and is equipped with two reactors, each of 35MW. Its operational life span is 40 years, with the provision of extending up to 50 years. Russia has already started working on second generation floating nuclear power plant, which will also have e two reactors, but each with an increased capacity of 50 MW. In addition to having a greater power capacity, the plant will be smaller than its predecessors. Rosatom’s strategy envisages supplying latest generation floating nuclear power plants to the most promising markets for small modular reactors (SMRs) across the globe. So far Middle East, North Africa and Southeast Asia countries shown significant interest in the FNPP technology. The first ever nuclear power plant of Bangladesh is being constructed by Rosatom at Rooppur village of Pabna district. The plant will have two units, each of 1,200 MW capacity. Latest and the safest Russian VVER-1200 reactors to be set up at Rooppur nuclear power plant.  
India plans to expand gas pipeline to Myanmar through Bangladesh
December 8, 2018 Saturday 5:16 PM By The Economic Times
The Indian central government will initially spend Rs 700 billion (70,000 crore) to spread gas pipelines across the country. It is also working out plans to expand gas network to Myanmar through Bangladesh, Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said Wednesday. Dharmendra Pradhan was speaking at the three-day conference being organised jointly by National Corrosion Council of India, Karaikudi, SERPL, Central Electrochemical Research Institute and Indian Oil Corporation (IOC). The Indian central government is promoting gas based economy which needs a massive network of pipelines for transportation of natural gas to various corners of the country, he said. “In the first phase Rs 700 billion will be invested to spread gas pipeline network across the country,” the petroleum minister said while addressing the 19th National Conference on Corrosion Control organised here. Pradhan said India is planning to expand gas pipeline network to Myanmar through Bangladesh. “Under this programme, pipelines are proposed to be constructed between Dhamra to Bangladesh and Siliguri to Bangladesh to export LNG gas according to the requirement of the neighbouring nation,” he said. Turning to Odisha, Pradhan said the state needs a huge infrastructure to store, refine and transport the natural gas to the doorsteps of the industry from Paradip, Dhamra and Gopalpur. He said Indian central government is contemplating to promote port-based industries in Odisha and also in other coastal states having natural ports. A strategic oil reserve project will also be launched in Chandikhol after acquiring land there, said Pradhan. The petroleum minister also announced that commercial production of polypropylene from Paradip refinery would commence this month. South Eastern Region Pipelines (SERPL) is presently operating cross-country pipelines network of crude oil and refined products as well as LPG of 1570 kms length with 19.35 MMTPA capacity, he said. Under this region, India Oil is having the biggest and largest crude oil handling facility at Paradip, which is feeding four most important refineries- Paradip, Haladia, Barauni and Bangaigaon. As future expansion plans under SERPL, laying works of 1212 km Paradip-Hyderabad pipeline with capacity of 4.5 MMTPA is in progress. Moreover, preconstruction works for 360 km long Paradip-Dhamra-Haladia LNG pipeline and 345 km long Paradip-Somanathpur-Haladia pipeline are also under progress, said the Petroleum Minister. Pradhan asked participating delegates, scientists and engineers to chalk out a roadmap for creation of better and advanced infrastructure for energy storage, refining and transportation with utilisation of corrosion free metals. The meet aims at analysing various industrial corrosion problems and provide a platform for interaction among industrialists, scientists, engineers and professionals.
Category: Regional
Shapoorji Pallonji bags country’s first large-scale floating solar project
November 29, 2018 Thursday 7:33 AM By The Economic Time
India’s first large-scale floating solar project is on its way with Shapoorji Pallonji winning the first block in Solar Energy Corporation of India’s auction of 150 MW of such projects on the Rihand Dam, along the Uttar Pradesh-Madhya Pradesh border. Shapoorji Pallonji won the reverse auction for 50 MW quoting a tariff of Rs 3.29 per unit, officials said. “This is the country’s first floating solar project at such a scale,” said a Solar Energy Corporation of India (SECI) official. “There are a few others but they are in kilowatts.” The remaining 100 MW will also be shortly auctioned in blocks of 50 MW, the official said. “We had considered bringing out such a tender two years earlier, but our initial inquiries showed tariffs would have been in the range of Rs 7-8 per unit, and so we decided not to go ahead,” the official said. Since then, solar tariffs have fallen dramatically, with those of ground mounted projects dropping to Rs 2.50-3.50 per unit. In UP, where solar radiation is not as strong as in states like Rajasthan, the average tariff has been more than Rs 3 per unit. Rihand Dam, also known as Govind Ballabh Pant Sagar, is the country’s largest reservoir by volume and largest artificial lake, located on the Rihand River with its catchment area spread over Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh. A problem several solar developers face is that of connectivity and transmission of the power they produce as mostly solar projects come up in rural areas because they need vast amounts of land – around six acres per MW. The Rihand floating projects will not have any such issues, and they can use the same transmission facilities as the hydropower station of the dam. “Floating solar is a well-established model worldwide,” said Vinay Rustagi, managing director at solar consultancy Bridge To India. “It is really great that India has also gone forward with floating solar and that too at this size.” He said the price discovered in the first reverse auction is 10% higher than ground-mounted projects in UP. “Given that transmission issues are less, the tariff is in line with expectations,” Rustagi said. He, however, expressed concern that the timeline for the project – at just 13 months – could be a challenge. “Acquiring floating structures within this deadline might be difficult," Rustagi said.
Category: Regional
China overtakes Japan to become world’s top natural gas importer
November 12, 2018 Monday 6:38 PM By Oilprice.com
China has recently overtaken Japan to become the world’s biggest importer of natural gas and will likely keep that crown as pipeline and liquefied natural gas (LNG) infrastructure grow, according to an analysis by S&P Global Platts. In the first ten months of this year, China imported a total of 72.06 million metric tons of natural gas, a 33.1-percent increase compared to January-October 2017. China’s natural gas imports in January-October this year were higher than all of its natural gas imports of 68.57 million tons in 2017, Platts notes, citing Chinese customs data. During the same period, Japan’s imports of LNG stood at 67.36 million tons. According to official data from Japan and China collected by Platts, China first overtook Japan in April this year, when it imported a total of 6.818 million tons of natural gas, higher than Japan’s imports of 6.079 million tons of LNG. Last year, the Chinese government drive to switch millions of residents from coal to natural gas resulted in China surpassing South Korea to become the world’s second-largest LNG importer behind Japan. China’s natural gas imports are set to rise with the construction of new LNG import terminals and the Power of Siberia pipeline from Russia, expected to come into service in late 2019. China is raising its domestic natural gas production, but it is importing and is expected to continue to import growing volumes of gas as domestic production growth can’t keep up with surging demand. According to the Gas 2018 report by the International Energy Agency (IEA), due to the policy to reduce air pollution, China’s natural gas demand is expected to grow by 60 percent through 2023. China is projected to account for 37 percent of the global growth in natural gas consumption between 2017 and 2023, more than any other country, the IEA said. The share of imports in China’s natural gas supply is seen rising from 39 percent to 45 percent by 2023, the agency forecasts.
Category: Other Countries
Southeast Asia’s renewables held back by policy inaction: IRENA
November 4, 2018 Sunday 10:38 AM By Reuters
Southeast Asia is a potential hotspot for renewable energy, yet the region has not met expectations because it lacks policy frameworks that would encourage investment, the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) told Reuters. Renewables across the world have typically been boosted by policies like price subsidies and guaranteed grid takeoff. In Southeast Asia, though, barring some exceptions such as in Thailand, support for renewables has been smaller, and the region lags far behind others in renewable output despite its potential, especially for solar, geothermal and wind power. One of the factors holding back renewables is the region’s abundance of thermal coal, of which Indonesia is the world’s biggest exporter. “Some of the ministers here believe coal is one of their cheaper alternatives, which to some extent is due to the abundance of proven coal resources in Southeast Asia,” IRENA’s director general Adnan Amin told the Reuters Commodity Summit interview series this week. Glencore, the world’s biggest thermal coal exporting company, said on Thursday that “Southeast Asia will drive future economic growth and demand for coal.” The miner said “coal will account for 40 percent of energy growth” in Southeast Asia by 2040 despite the emergence of renewables in the region. CATCHING UP Global renewable capacity, excluding hydro, has soared from under 100,000 megawatts (MW) in 2000 to more than 1 million MW in 2017, according to IRENA data. Only a tiny portion of that has come in Southeast Asia. Europe and North America were the first regions to seriously boost renewable energy, and today, China is the leader in the sector, with India catching up. Now, there are also efforts underway in Southeast Asia: the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) plans to generate 23 percent of its primary energy needs from renewables by 2025, up from just over 10 percent now. To help achieve that, ASEAN and IRENA signed an agreement this week to boost renewable investment and deployment. “I think the adoption of the 23 percent target is a very good step, but that needs to be translated now into policy actions,” said Amin. “Over the next decade, a total of $290 billion will have to be invested for Southeast Asia to reach its targets, a ten-fold increase on the annual investments we’re seeing today,” Amin said, speaking to Reuters while attending Singapore’s International Energy Week (SIEW). Amin said renewable investment, including in Southeast Asia, would receive a boost from “dramatic reductions in the cost of renewables.” Solar panel prices have crashed to under 50 cents per watt of electricity, from around $70 per watt in 1980 as technology and manufacturing efficiency have improved. “Solar is very dynamic right now, and is going to take the largest share of investments ... We’re seeing over the next decade another 50-60 percent decrease in costs, which will bring electricity cost very close to zero,” Amin said. At the same time, Amin said capital markets were starting to price carbon risks, raising the cost of fossil fuels. “Financial institutions have started to bail out from financing coal, so, cost of investments in coal will rise while cost of investments in renewables are decreasing,” Amin said. The latest major bank to pull out of coal financing was Britain`s Standard Chartered in September. Renewable investments have soared over the past decade, though, reaching almost $1 trillion since 2015, IRENA said. Amin said solar would also start to compete with natural gas, an industry that has so far seen itself as complementary to intermittent renewables. “We see the momentum on renewables going so fast that they’ve become competitive with gas power generation. Increasingly as people do the math about investments ... the renewables will start to play a bigger and bigger role.”
Category: Regional
OPEC oil output rises to highest since 2016 despite Iran
November 1, 2018 Thursday 10:53 PM By Reuters
OPEC has boosted oil production in October to the highest since 2016, a Reuters survey found, as higher output led by the United Arab Emirates and Libya more than offset a cut in Iranian shipments due to U.S. sanctions. The 15-member Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries has pumped 33.31 million barrels per day this month, the survey on Wednesday found, up 390,000 bpd from September and the highest by OPEC as a group since December 2016. OPEC agreed in June to pump more oil after pressure from U.S. President Donald Trump to curb rising prices and make up for an expected shortfall in Iranian exports. Oil hit a four-year high of $86.74 a barrel on Oct. 3 but has since eased to $76 as concerns over tight supplies faded. "Oil producers appear to be successfully offsetting the supply outages from Iran and Venezuela," said Carsten Fritsch, analyst at Commerzbank in Frankfurt. The June pact involved OPEC, Russia and other non-members returning to 100 percent compliance with output cuts that began in January 2017, after months of underproduction in Venezuela, Angola and elsewhere had pushed adherence above 160 percent. In October, the 12 OPEC members bound by the supply-limiting agreement lowered compliance to 107 percent as production rose, from a revised 122 percent in September, the survey found. This is the closest OPEC has moved to 100 percent compliance since the June agreement. UAE, LIBYA The biggest increase has come this month from the UAE. Output in October rose by 200,000 bpd to 3.25 million bpd, the survey found, and could in theory rise further as the UAE says its oil-production capacity will reach 3.5 million bpd by the year-end. The second-largest came from Libya where production averaged 1.22 million bpd, the survey found, a rise of 170,000 bpd. Libyan output remains volatile due to unrest, raising questions about the stability of current OPEC production. Saudi Arabia, after opening the taps in June and then scaling back its plans to pump more, supplied 10.65 million bpd in October, more than in June and close to a record high, the survey found. The kingdom, OPEC`s top producer, has indicated it is concerned about potential oversupply, raising the prospect that its next production adjustment could be to rein in output. OPEC`s second-largest producer, Iraq, also raised output in October. Iraqi supply could rise further if Iraq`s new government goes ahead with a deal reached by the outgoing administration and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) to resume exporting Kirkuk crude to Turkey via the KRG. Angola, where natural declines at oilfields curbed production in recent years, boosted supply in October due to supply from a new field, Gindungo. Output is still far below its OPEC target. Supply in Nigeria rose by 30,000 bpd. Like Libya, Nigeria is not part of the OPEC supply-cutting pact because it often faces unplanned outages stemming from unrest. Output in Kuwait edged lower, the survey found. The country had raised production in July following the OPEC deal, and kept it steady in August and September. Among countries with lower output, the biggest drop - 100,000 bpd - occurred in Iran. Exports fell as returning U.S. sanctions discouraged companies from buying the country`s oil, although the decline was lower than some analysts expected. "Iran is going to come in above expectations," said an industry source who tracks OPEC output, referring to Iranian supply in October. Production also slipped further in Venezuela, where a lack of funds for the oil industry because of the country`s economic crisis is cutting refinery operations and crude exports. Despite these decreases, OPEC output in October has risen to the highest since December 2016, the month before the supply-cutting pact took effect, according to Reuters surveys. Some of the extra oil has come from Congo Republic and Equatorial Guinea, which joined OPEC in 2018 and 2017 respectively. Before Congo joined, OPEC had an implied production target for 2018 of 32.78 million bpd, based on cutbacks detailed in late 2016 and Nigeria and Libya`s expectations of 2018 output. According to the survey, OPEC excluding Congo pumped about 530,000 bpd above this implied target in October. The survey aims to track supply to the market and is based on shipping data provided by external sources, Thomson Reuters flows data and information provided by sources at oil companies, OPEC and consulting firms.  
Category: Other Countries
Chinese nuclear power unit built with Russian assistance connects to grid
October 28, 2018 Sunday 6:48 PM By News Desk, energynewsbd.com
Unit 4 of Tianwan Nuclear Power Project (TNPP) of china started injecting electricity to national grid on October 27. The unit is constructed with Russian assistance using VVER-1000 reactor, said a press release. Alexey Likhachev, Director General of Rosatom State Corporation termed Tianwan NPP as the biggest  power project  under Russia-China co-operation  and said , “ We sincerely hope that our  cooperation both in construction of the next phase of Tianwan NPP and  other at Xudapu site shall also be successful.” Following permission from the Chinese regulator, power at Tianwan 4 was raised to 25% of capacity, after which the turbine was brought into operation and electrical tests of the field and power delivery systems were carried out. Power unit 4 was, thereby, connected to the grid. All systems performed in normal operational mode. Reactor operation will be checked at 200 MW output dynamic tests will be performed at 50%, 75% and 100% of capacity. Upon completion of initial testing at full thermal capacity, demonstration operation will proceed at nominal capacity for 100 hours, after which preliminary acceptance procedures will follow. Preliminary acceptance is the starting point of a two-year warranty period for the operation of Tianwan 4. According to Valery Limarenko, Head of Rosatom State Corporation Engineering Division, power start-up of Unit 4 of Tianwan NPP is another victory for the team of Russian and Chinese specialists. He said, “Our partnership lasting for several decades provides additional confidence in successful continuation of our future work. We have even greater challenges ahead as we have to construct minimum four more power units with VVER-1200 rectors in China.” Construction of Tianwan nuclear power plant is being carried out by Jiangsu Nuclear Power Corporation (JNPC) in cooperation with Russian company Atomstroyexport, an engineering division of ROSATOM. Start-up of Tianwan NPP power units 1 and 2 was held in 2007 and of unit-3 in December 2017.    
Category: Other Countries
Uzbekistan embarks on nuclear power plant construction with Russian design
October 20, 2018 Saturday 7:29 PM By News Desk, energynewsbd.com
Central Asian country Uzbekistan formally begins implementation of their first ever nuclear power project. The project envisages the construction of two Generation III+ Russian VVER-1200 power units. The first power unit is scheduled to be commissioned before the end of 2028, said a press release. Deputy Prime Minister of Uzbekistan Alisher Sultanov and Director General of ROSATOM Alexey Likhachev inaugurated the study of one of the potential sites in the country on October 19. President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev and President of Russia Vladimir Putin, joined the event through a videoconference from the Uzbek capital Tashkent. Leaders of the two countries pressed a symbolic button, launching drilling operations at the construction sites to collect soil samples. Few sites were primarily selected based on the results of seismological, geological, ecological and economic feasibility studies. “The creation and development of the nuclear power sector, initiated by the President Shavkat Mirziyoyev, marks a new era for the country’s energy industry and  which will stimulate stable economic development and  will help increase quality of life  of the people,” noted Alisher Sultanov. Alexey Likhachev said, “History of cooperation between Uzbekistan and Russia in the nuclear field is more than half a century long, and we are proud that Uzbekistan chose Russian technologies for the construction of the first NPP in the country. In Uzbekistan ROSATOM will build the most advanced Generation III+ nuclear power plant with two VVER-1200 power units that meets all international safety requirements.” Moreover, both the countries signed a memorandum of understanding on formation of positive public opinion towards nuclear energy in Uzbekistan. The document lays the foundation for bilateral cooperation to promote nuclear power in Uzbekistan and create awareness about modern nuclear energy technologies, to train national media representatives, organize and hold joint conferences, and implement social and educational projects in Uzbekistan.  
Category: Other Countries
India targets 40 GW from rooftop solar system
October 13, 2018 Saturday 11:41 AM By Business Standard
India has a target of 100 gigawatt (GW) installed capacity of solar energy by 2022, of which 40 GW is projected to come from rooftop solar systems, an energy expert said on Thursday. Former Senior Scientific Advisor in the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy Dr Bivek Bandyopadhyay said the World Bank and Global Environment Fund (GEF) had launched a large financing program in 2016 to support clean energy. “Rooftop Solar photovoltaic technology is rapidly emerging as a solution for de-centralized renewable energy generation globally due to the plummeting cost of the technology,” he said while addressing a seminar. He said the rooftop generates electricity from solar power beyond the limit of land availability, enabling higher penetration of renewable energy in the power system, leading to more reduction in Green House Gas (GHG) emissions and climatic change mitigation. He further said that along with hydroelectric projects in the state, the Rooftop Solar PV will enable to create ‘Green Nagaland’. While introducing Sustainable Partnership for Rooftop Solar Acceleration in Bharat (SUPRABHA), the team leader, Yuvaraj Dinesh Babu Nithyanandam said to help each state, the northeastern region has been given to the World Bank to look after the capacity building. He said that the target given to Nagaland is about 50MW for RTS. SUPRABHA’s proposed engagements with Nagaland are development of an exclusive solar rooftop policy, capacity building, training of utility engineers, entrepreneurs, bankers, unified web portal for online subsidy and interconnection modules. Advisor to Nagaland Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio, Mmhonlumo Kikon voiced confidence that the engineers of the state will find the best solution in implementing the solar rooftop plan. Kikon said the Nagaland government has proposed smaller size solar parks with a capacity 23 MW but faces funding problems in infrastructure development. “Northeastern region requires a different approach. So, the funding pattern needs to be looked at seriously by an independent body,” he said.
Category: Regional
Asian LNG prices ease as supply levels remain healthy
October 10, 2018 Wednesday 8:25 PM By Reuters
Asian spot liquefied natural gas (LNG) prices eased slightly over the past week as healthy supplies going into the northern hemisphere’s autumn season countered upward pressure from a bullish oil market. Spot prices for November delivery LNG-AS dipped by 10 cents to $11 per million British thermal units (mmBtu), industry sources said. That slip came despite an extremely bullish crude oil market which has seen benchmark Brent futures surge by 20 percent since mid-August ahead of U.S. sanctions against Iran’s petroleum sector that kick in from November 4. While a major oil exporter, Iran sells no LNG, and traders said Asian gas markets were well supplied. “Oil markets may be volatile and bullish at the moment. In LNG, things are a bit more quiet at this stage,” said a Singapore-based trader. “Sure, demand is strong ahead of the winter heating season across North Asia, but supply is also pretty decent,” he said, declining to be identified as he was not authorised to speak with media. The well-supplied market is reflected in the price curve, in which Brent-indexed LNG prices show a slight rise over the coming peak winter months, but with the curve easing after that into the second-half of 2019. Japan’s Inpex said this week it shipped its first condensate export cargo from the Ichthys LNG project in Australia. Inpex said in August that it expected the $40 billion Ichthys project to start shipping condensate, LNG and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) in that order from around end-September to end-December. LNG demand tends to rise in the second-half of a year as utilities in the demand centres of Japan, China and South Korea prepare for the peak winter consumption season. The weather outlook for North Asia is for average conditions in the next 45 days, with Tokyo expecting slightly above average temperatures and Seoul expecting slightly cooler conditions, according to data in Refinitiv Eikon. Beijing is expected to experience temperatures around the seasonal norm, the data showed. Strong overall demand has returned the gas industry to good health after years of spending cuts and project cancellations between 2014 and 2017. Royal Dutch Shell, which has the world’s biggest LNG portfolio, this week announced it would go ahead with the 14 million tonnes per annum LNG Canada project, at a cost estimate of $31 billion. The project is expected to deliver its first LNG cargo in 2025.  
Category: Other Countries
India signs agreement for 6 nuclear power units with Russian VVER-1200 reactors
October 6, 2018 Saturday 4:02 PM By News Desk, energynewsbd.com
On sideline of the 19th India-Russia Annual bilateral summit, held in New Delhi, both the countries on Friday have signed a deal for cooperation in implementing of a new nuclear power project in India. The new project will have six power units with latest generation 3+ VVER 1200 reactors, said a press release. The action plan document was signed by India’s department of Atomic Energy Secretary Kamlesh Vyas and Rosatom director general Alexey Likhachev. “We are satisfied with our strategic cooperation with India, where the Russian designed nuclear power units are operating and being constructed at Kudankulam site. We expect to start implementation in the near future serial construction of new units at a second site in India. This will significantly increase level of equipment localization within framework of the “Make in India” policy, as well as optimize timing and cost of the project execution. Moreover, India is our trusted partner, with whom we are already implementing projects in the third countries, and we plan to enhance this cooperation,” said Alexey Likhachev in a statement after signing the agreement. Commenting on the agreement, Jawaharlal Nehru University Emeritus Professor Ramamurti Rajaraman noted that Russia is the only country to have successfully set up nuclear power plants in India, despite the problems posed for foreign suppliers by India’s civil nuclear liability insurance law. Under an agreement signed earlier, Russia has been implementing the nuclear power project with six power units at Kudankulam of Tamil Nadu. Two of those six units are already supplying electricity to Indian national grid. All the units are being constructed based on Russian VVER 1000 reactors while the new project will have units equipped with more advanced VVER 1200 reactors. Production capacity of these type of reactors is 20% higher. It may be mentioned here that Rooppur Nuclear Power Plant in Bangladesh will have two units each with a VVER 1200 reactor. Atomstroyexport (ASE), engineering division of Rosatom, the State Nuclear Corporation of Russia is implementing the project. Under a trilateral agreement, Indian companies can be involved in construction and installation works, the supply of material and equipment of a non-critical category, as well as in the training of personnel.
Category: Regional
‘India-Led Solar Alliance Will Outshine OPEC’
October 5, 2018 Friday 8:10 PM By NDTV/AFP
An India-led coalition to harness solar energy will eventually replace the OPEC oil cartel, Prime Minister Narendra Modi predicted on Tuesday, as he opened the International Solar Alliance or ISA’s first assembly with UN chief Antonio Guterres. “The role of the oil wells today will be that of the Sun’s rays tomorrow,” PM Modi said at the meeting in New Delhi. “In the coming years, when the world discusses initiatives for the welfare of humanity in the 21st century, International Solar Alliance’s name will be at the top. We have prepared everyone to ensure climate justice through this ISA forum,” he said. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries or OPEC pumps around a third of the world’s oil, and over decades has been able to influence the global energy market by controlling the price of crude. The International Solar Alliance, launched by Prime Minister Modi and then French president Francois Hollande in 2015 and based in India, is an alliance of countries mostly between the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn that receive plentiful sunshine. It aims to reduce the costs of financing solar power and the required technology, and to mobilise more than a trillion dollars to build solar facilities and infrastructure by 2030. “The International Solar Alliance represents exactly what needs to be done and represents the future,”  Guterres said at the event. “We know what we need to do, and by large, we have the tools to do it. What we still lack, fortunately not here in this room... is the political commitment to make the transformative decisions that will lead us onto a safer path,” he said. With only a single degree Celsius of warming so far, the world has seen a climate-enhanced crescendo of deadly heatwaves, wild fires and floods, along with superstorms swollen by rising seas. India’s population of 1.3 billion is particularly vulnerable to climate change. In August, the worst rains and floods in a century pounded Kerala, displacing 1.3 million people, with climate scientists warning that worse is to come if global warming continues unabated. The International Solar Alliance’s first assembly, involving member countries, banks, development funds, the corporate sector and civil society groups, is due to run until Friday.
Category: Regional
China’s benchmark power coal price stays flat
October 3, 2018 Wednesday 10:32 AM By Xinhua
China’s benchmark power coal price remained unchanged during the past week in part due to increasing coal imports and shrinking consumption in coal-fired power plants. The Bohai-Rim Steam-Coal Price Index, a gauge of coal prices in northern China’s major ports, stood at 569 yuan (around 82.71 U.S. dollars) per tonne, the same as a week ago, according to Qinhuangdao Ocean Shipping Coal Trading Market Co. Ltd. The index was 2.9 percent lower than at the same period in 2017. Power coal prices have largely remained stable with slight fluctuations. Coal imports remain at a high level, up 13.5 percent year-on-year to 28.68 million tonnes in August. As the peak season passed, daily coal consumption averaged 635,000 tonnes in six major coastal power stations, markedly down from 706,000 tonnes a year ago. China is in the middle of capacity cutting in its overloaded coal sectors, with plans to reduce a further 150 million tonnes of capacity this year.
Category: Other Countries
Nepal, China agree to facilitate joint investment in power sector
September 30, 2018 Sunday 9:43 AM By Xinhua
Nepal and China agreed to facilitate joint investment in the power sector during the first meeting of the Nepal-China Joint Implementation Mechanism held here on Friday, said a joint statement issued after the meeting. The meeting was conducted as a stepping stone to implement the Memorandum of Understanding on Energy Cooperation signed by energy ministers of both countries during the visit of Nepali Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli to China in June this year. According to the joint statement, both sides introduced their power systems, investment prospects, power markets, future plans among others to make both sides familiar with each other`s power system. The joint statement said that during the meeting, possible energy collaboration and the possibility of developing cross-border interconnection were also discussed. Dinesh Ghimire, spokesperson at Nepal`s Ministry of Energy, Water Resources and Irrigation (MoEWRI), told Xinhua on Friday that the two sides agreed to prepare a power system cooperation plan once the competent authorities of the two countries give the go-ahead. "A joint working group will be formed to prepare the plan." Ghimire said, adding that the plan will also involve the identification and selection of energy projects for joint development. The Nepali team was led by Anup Kumar Upadhyay, secretary at MoEWRI, while the Chinese delegation was led by He Yang, an official at National Energy Administration of China, according to the joint statement.
Category: Other Countries
Oil prices may rise to $100 a barrel by end of year
September 25, 2018 Tuesday 5:10 PM By Reuters
Oil prices could rise towards $100 per barrel towards the end of the year or by early 2019 as sanctions against Iran bite. This was predicted by commodity merchants Trafigura and Mercuria said on Monday at the Asia Pacific Petroleum Conference (APPEC) in Singapore. Almost two million barrels per day (bpd) of crude could be taken out of the market as a result of the US sanctions against Iran by the end of the fourth quarter this year, said Daniel Jaeggi, president of commodity merchant Mercuria Energy Trading, making a crude price spike to $100 a barrel possible. “We`re on the verge of some significant volatility in Q4 2018 because depending on the severity and duration of the Iranian sanctions, the market simply does not have an adequate supply response for a 2.0 million barrel a day disappearance of oil from the markets,” Jaeggi said. Washington has already implemented financial sanctions against Iran and it plans to target the country’s oil exports from November 04, putting pressure on other countries to also cut Iranian crude imports. Ben Luckock, co-head of oil trading at fellow merchant Trafigura said crude oil prices could rise to $90 per barrel by Christmas and to $100 by the New Year as markets tighten. Oil prices LCOc1 have been rising since early 2017, when the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) together with other suppliers including Russia started withholding output to lift crude values. Unplanned disruptions from Venezuela to Libya and Nigeria have further tightened the market just as global demand approaches 100 million bpd for the first time. The threats of disruption as well as the early supply cuts have helped to lift Brent crude futures to nearly $80 a barrel this month, a level not seen since 2014. With US sanctions against Iran, the third-largest producer in OPEC, looming, US investment bank JP Morgan said in its latest market outlook that “a spike to $90 per barrel is likely” for oil prices in the coming months. OPEC and other oil producers are considering raising output by 500,000 bpd to counter falling supply from Iran.
Category: Other Countries
China now becomes world’s second-largest LNG importer
September 25, 2018 Tuesday 6:25 AM By Xinhua
China imported 4.71 million tonnes of liquefied natural gas (LNG) in August, up 51.5 percent year on year, the country’s customs authority said. Total LNG imports in the first eight months reached 32.63 million tonnes, up 47.8 percent year on year, according to the General Administration of Customs. China surpassed the Republic of Korea to become the world’s second-largest importer of LNG in 2017, according to IHS Markit, a global marketing information company. China`s imports of natural gas have grown to meet increasing domestic consumption, primarily driven by environmental policies to replace coal-fired electricity generation. An industry report says, the country is likely to surpass Japan to become the world’s largest natural gas importer by 2019, with imports expected to reach 171 billion cubic meters by 2023, mostly LNG.
Category: Other Countries
OPEC, allies agree not to further increase oil production
September 24, 2018 Monday 3:59 PM By AP/UNB
A meeting of OPEC and its allies ended without any decision to further increase oil output despite President Donald Trump’s call for lower prices. Members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries met on Sunday in Algiers with non-members including Russia. The committee said in a statement that it was satisfied “regarding the current oil market outlook, with an overall healthy balance between supply and demand.” It also urged “countries with spare capacity to work with customers to meet their demand during the remaining month of 2018.” Trump has been calling publicly for OPEC to help lower prices by producing more. “We protect the countries of the Middle East, they would not be safe for very long without us, and yet they continue to push for higher and higher oil prices!” he tweeted on Thursday. The price rise is notably caused by a recent drop in Iran`s supply because of U.S. sanctions. OPEC and Russia have capped production since January 2017 to bolster prices. Output fell below those targets this year, and in June the same countries agreed to boost the oil supply. Saudi Arabia Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih told reporters that participating countries have provided over the last three months “a lot of supply to offset decreases” in Iran, Venezuela and Mexico. “Markets are quite balanced today, there`s plenty of supply to meet any customer that needs it.” Also Sunday, OPEC released its World Oil Outlook 2040 report. The cartel says that China and India will drive growth in energy demand through 2040, and that oil will continue to remain the biggest source of energy despite a global push for cleaner resources. Oil demand is forecast to increase by 14.5 million barrels a day to a total of 111.7 million barrels in 2040, driven by an expanding middle class and economic growth in developing countries. The U.S., which isn’t an OPEC member and has in recent years seen a renewed boom in shale oil, will continue to grow as a crude producer, peaking in the late 2020s. That suggests OPEC’s power to influence the market will be tempered by U.S. production for about another decade.  
Category: Other Countries
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