Utility Week

UTILITY Week 17th October 2014

Utility Week - authoritative, impartial and essential reading for senior people within utilities, regulators and government

Issue link: https://fhpublishing.uberflip.com/i/398458

Contents of this Issue


Page 3 of 31

National media Fracking firms get free hand in chemical use The government plans to allow fracking companies to put "any substance" under people's homes and property and leave it there, as part of the Infrastructure Bill, which will be debated by the House of Lords on Tuesday. The legal change makes a "mockery" of ministers' claims that the UK has the best shale gas regulation in the world, according to green campaigners, who said it is so loosely worded it could also enable the burial of nuclear waste. The government said the changes were "vital to kick-starting shale" gas exploration. The Guardian, 14 October Google boss moots windfarms in the skies Google has offered tantalising glimpses of a future where wind turbines are tethered 300m from the ground, spelling an end to the controversial ground- based versions. The winged turbines would float at high altitude, tapping into the higher wind speeds, and could increase the amount of energy produced and save on construction costs, said one of the company's British executives, Peter Fitzgerald, Google's UK sales director. The Telegraph, 9 October Alien species invade British rivers Five of Europe's deadliest fresh- water species are now in UK waters wreaking havoc on the environ- ment, a Cambridge University study has warned. Besides affecting water quality, they also disrupt water sup- plies by blocking pipes and causing flooding. The Independent, 13 October T he UK's first new nuclear power station to be built in nearly 20 years is set to go ahead at Hinkley Point C follow- ing long-awaited approval from the European Commission over the government's funding plans for the project. The Commission said the project did not breach state aid rules, but added that "sig- nificant" changes needed to be made to the deal. "The UK has agreed to significantly modify the terms of the project financing. As a result, the state aid provided will remain proportionate to the objective pursued, avoiding any undue distortions of competi- tion in the single market. The modifications also reduce UK citizens' financial contribution to the project," a statement from the Commission said. Specifically, the Commis- sion said the guarantee fee that EDF has to pay the Treasury is "too low for a project with this risk profile" and should be increased, reducing the subsidy by £1 billion. The Commission has also put forward a new gain-share mechanism across the lifetime of the project to ensure that if the operating profit exceeded a predetermined level, the subsidy paid by consumers would be reduced. "An increase in the profit rate of only one percentage point, for example, will generate savings of more than £1.2 billion," the Commission said. Crucially for the agreement, the strike price set out in the contract for difference (CfD) has not been changed. The UK has agreed to guarantee a minimum financial return of £92.50/MWh over 35 years at the plant, to be built in southwest England through the CfD. EU approves CfD subsidy regime for Hinkley Point C Seven days... Energy complaints treble Complaints against energy firms in Septem- ber were three times higher than last year, accord- ing to Ombuds- man Services. 4,354 complaints were made to Ombuds- man Services in September 1,571 complaints were recorded in September 2013 3,687 complaints concerned bill- ing, charges and meter readings 11% of complaints were about switching tariff or provider story by NUMbErs "There's no justification for turning taxes into guaranteed profits for a nuclear plant whose only legacy will be a pile of radioactive waste." Greenpeace EU legal adviser Andrea Carta "A decision on Hinkley signals that at long last the much-needed investment in new nuclear power stations can now start." Energy UK chief executive Angela Knight 4 | 17TH - 23RD OCTOBER 2014 | UTILITY WEEK

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of Utility Week - UTILITY Week 17th October 2014