Russia plans major atomic investment

Petr Shchedrovitskiy, the deputy director of OAO Nuclear Energy complex, has said that Russia plans to build and put into operation two GW of nuclear power generation capacity per year, beginning from 2012.

Shchedrovitskiy made this announcement at Polar Lights 2008, an international science and innovation conference focusing on a nuclear future. “Such a pace will allow us to increase the share of the nuclear power sector in the [country’s] electricity generation to 22-25 per cent by 2030.”

Over the same time-frame Russia plans to be involved in a number of projects to build nuclear plants outside of the country.

By the end of the federal targeted programme on the Development of Russia’s Nuclear Energy Complex to 2015, ten new generating units with a total capacity of 11 GW are expected to be in operation, with a further ten units in various phases of construction.

According to Shchedrovitsiky, the total operational nuclear capacity should exceed 33 GW by 2015. To achieve this R675bn ($28bn) has been allocated from the federal programme, which totals R1471bn.

Power crisis forces South Africa to rethink its energy policy

South Africa’s continuing electricity crisis is forcing Eskom, the state-owned utility, to look at diversifying its energy mix, moving towards renewable energy sources.

Eskom has commissioned a study, which found that a comprehensive solar geyser programme could remove 4747 MW from winter peak load and a significant percentage of electricity load from both morning and evening peaks all year round. The programme is said to produce an annual electricity savings of 12 125 GWh.

Last year the power utility held the first round of bidding for cogeneration projects, which elicited 100 potential projects. If implemented they could add 5000 MW to the national grid.

Areva signs power deals in Qatar

Areva Transmission and Distribution has signed a g470m ($699m) electricity distribution and transmission deal with Kahramaa, the Qatar General Electricity and Water Corporation.

The deal is part of the Qatar Power Transmission System Expansion programme and includes the turnkey delivery of 14 gas-insulated substations to develop and improve the network in the Doha region. The equipment is planned for delivery by the first quarter of 2010.

The company was awarded a second contract, which includes the delivery of a state-of-the-art technology to upgrade the National Control Centre. The centre represents the core of the country’s power transmission system.

Abu Dhabi takes control of northern emirates generation

A long-awaited agreement has been signed that will hand responsibility for power generation in the northern emirates to Abu Dhabi, according to a report in MEED.

Under the deal, the five northern emirates will depend on the Abu Dhabi Water & Electricity Authority (ADWEA) for power.

The memorandum of understanding, which was agreed last month, will be followed by a power purchasing agreement, under which ADWEA will supply the northern emirates with 2500 MW of power up to 2015.

Initially, the federal authority will take a share of the power produced from the 890 MW Fujairah 1 and 2000 MW Fujairah 2 IWPPs being developed by ADWEA. The total capacity installed across Ajman, Fujairah, Ras al-Khaimah, Sharjah and Umm al-Quwain is about 1100MW, with 200 MW to be added by April.

Abu Dhabi to host hydrogen power plant with CCS

Masdar, Abu Dhabi’s initiative for alternative energy, and Hydrogen Energy, the joint venture between BP and Rio Tinto, are to develop the front-end engineering design of an industrial-scale hydrogen-fired power generation project with carbon capture in Abu Dhabi, UAE.

Work has already started on the project, and front-end engineering and design of the project is to be completed by the end of 2008, at a cost of some US$45m.

At the heart of the plant would be a natural gas reformer and carbon capture facility where 30.5m3 of natural gas per day would be transformed into hydrogen and carbon dioxide (CO2) gases.

The hydrogen gas would be used to fuel gas turbines and generate around 420 MW of low-carbon electricity, with water vapour being the main emission. This would be enough to provide more than five per cent of all Abu Dhabi’s current power generation capacity.

The overall project would require total capital investment (excluding the investment in CO2 transportation and sequestration) of about AED7bn ($2bn).

Subject to the completion of the engineering design and agreement on an enabling commercial structure, the partners aspire to make the decision to proceed with construction by early 2009. This should allow the plant to come into commercial operation in 2012.

Bahrain: A total of 13 bids have been prequalified for the Addur independent power and water project in Bahrain. They include International Power of the UK, India’s Reliance Energy, Sembcorp of Singapore and France’s Suez.

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Egypt: Orascom Construction Industries of Egypt in partnership with Belgium’s Besix, have been awarded a EGP560m ($101m) civil works package for Egypt’s 750 MW Sidi Krier combined-cycle power plant.

Iran: Mohammad Saeedi, the deputy head of the country’s atomic energy agency, expects Bushehr, Iran’s first nuclear plant, to be producing electricity at full capacity of 1000 MW within a year.

Jordan: Qinetiq has won a $1m contract from Jordan’s Central Electricity Generating Company to provide independent performance assessments at seven of the country’s power stations.

Kyrgystan: EDF and PricewaterhouseCooper have won the tender for an investment study of Kyrgystan’s Kambarata-1 and -2 hydropower plants.

Libya: Doosan Heavy Industries & construction Company has won a $260m order to build a 1400 MW gas fired power plant for Libya’s Gerneral Electricity Company.

Qatar: A multi-national group comprising Larsen & Toubro of India, South Korea’s Hyundai Engineering & Construction and Isolux Corsan of Spain has won contracts for Phase eight of Qatar’s g800m ($1.19m) power transmission system expansion plan.

Russia: The board of directors of RAO UES has recommended that OGK-2 approve the turnkey deal for a consortium led by JSC E4 Group to build two combined-cycle power generation units at the Stavropolskaya power plant.

South Africa: Eskom is to build 20 GW of nuclear power by 2025. The first plant, expected to have a capacity of 3300-4000 MW, could be in commercial operation by 2017, if approved.

UAE: The Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company is preparing to issue tenders to prequalified developers to build what is said to be world’s largest solar thermal power project. Siemens and GE are expected to bid for the 1000 MW project.