CHINA PAYS FOR AUSSIE COAL EMBARGO
- Beijing blacklisted imports of Australian coal as part of the trade war last month
- Some 80 ships carrying $1.1b worth of coal are sitting off the Australian coast
- Coal prices have skyrocketed in China as domestic supply struggles to keep up
- Now provincial governments are imposing restrictions on electricity usage
- There are power outages and limits of heating and AC use during the cold winter
EUROPEAN GREEN TRANSITION BECALMED
Europe’s ‘inevitable transition’ to wind and solar is not looking so ‘inevitable’, after all. A burst of cold, calm weather has grid managers panicking as to where their next megawatt might come from.
Those opportunistic ‘devils’ who command reliable, fossil-fuelled power generation sources are making out like veritable bandits and power punters are bracing themselves for another bitter winter of being left freezing in the dark.
BACKLASH AGAINST TURBINES IN NORWAY
Norway runs almost entirely on hydro with massive oil and gas reserves for export earnings. Expanding the oil and gas industries will need more power and the government has ambitious green energy targets that have aroused massive popular resistance.
While the cost of wind power is falling, a growing number of voters want to see less of it. They’d rather see alternatives like more hydro or even fossil fuels — which would clash with the government’s environmental goals. A survey in November showed that only 36% were favorable about onshore wind as an energy source, down from as much as 84% in 2011. Oil’s popularity has increased to 29% from just 16% five years ago.
DRAMA AT LIDDELL! This is the event that everyone has been waiting for although losing only one generator may not be enough to sound the alarm that is required to wake up the RE fundamentalists from their dogmatic slumber. One of the four generators is out of action, removing 420MW of supply from the system running into the hot weather when demand peaks. This triggered an ‘actual Lack of Reserve Level 2‘ alarm from the Market Operator and activated the Reliability and Emergency Reserve Trader (RERT) mechanism.
This means directly purchasing additional supplies of power throughout Thursday afternoon “to maintain the power system in a Reliable operating state.”
Prices in the NSW region of the National Electricity Market spiked immediately after the incident, and later spiked to the market cap of $15,000/MWh, and staying elevated for most of the afternoon until additional generation could be brought online.
The RERT is actually a RORT because there is no additional power available. It means paying high-end consumers to cut back for a time so the lights don’t start flickering elsewhere in the grid.
ON THE WINDWATCHING FRONT we have low wind across the SE providing 3% of electricity demand this Sunday morning.
Excitement for wind-watchers! At noon the wind is down to 1.7% of demand with the windmills functioning at 3.8% of plated capacity.
See the widget to update.
NSW is importing from Queensland as normal and also from Victoria as well, not so normal. More excitement, Tasmania (the battery of the nation) is importing. And the demand in SA is less than half the demand in Tasmania. Don’t look to the State of Darkness for the RE-driven revival of manufacturing!