Utility Week

UTILITY Week 27th March 2015

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4 | 27th March - 2nd april 2015 | UtilitY WEEK National media Campaign boosts switching a government campaign to encourage switching has seen a dramatic increase in the number of con- sumers changing energy supplier compared with the same period last year. 80% increase in switches on the same period last year 130k number of switches in past month 193% increase in total consumer savings £38m total consumer savings £312 average saving for dual fuel switches Costa Rica goes 75 days on green power Costa Rica has achieved a clean energy milestone by using 100 per cent renewable energy for a record 75 days in a row. The feat was achieved thanks to heavy rainfall, which powered four hydroelectric plants in the first three months of the year, the state-run Costa Rican Electricity Institute said. The Independent, 22 March Abingdon smelly water mystery solved Smelly water in an Oxfordshire town has been caused by a burst water main dispersing the plastic compound used in its lining, a water firm has said. Thames Water handed out 22,500 bottles in the Abingdon area aer more than 50 residents reported the strange odour. It said repairs may not be com- pleted until the weekend because of the pipe's "tricky" woodland location. The compound is said to be only present in tiny levels and not dangerous. BBC News, 20 March California pushes $1bn drought relief bond Governor Jerry Brown and legisla- tive leaders on Thursday proposed legislation to accelerate more than $1 billion in drought-relief bond spending for California as it copes with a fourth dry year. "We need to get the money out the door now for shovel-ready projects and existing water pro- grammes that only need funding to get started," Senate president pro tem Kevin de Leon said. "No delay. No red tape." The proposal accelerates spend- ing voters have already approved. The Guardian, 19 March story by NUMbErs S cottish Power's Longannet power plant will be forced to close next year aer National Grid opted to award a crucial contract to rival genera- tor SSE. National Grid's voltage support contract was the final option le for the 2.4GW coal- fired plant to remain profitable against a backdrop of steep transmission charges levelled against generators north of the border. On 23 March, National Grid said the contract had gone to SSE's Peterhead gas plant, which it said was "best able to meet our requirements". Scottish Power chief executive Neil Clitheroe said the company was "extremely disappointed" by the snub, adding that "in all likelihood" it would be forced to announce the closure of Longannet by March 2016. National Grid defended its decision, saying that Peter- head's proposal was better in terms of stability, resilience and value for money. While green groups praised National Grid's support of a gas plant over coal, the Department of Energy and Climate Change welcomed the support for Peter- head, which is advancing the government's carbon capture and storage ambitions. The threat to Longannet's future has become increasingly politicised ahead of the May general election, with Scot- tish first minister and Scottish National Party leader Nicola Sturgeon calling directly on prime minister David Cameron to take "urgent action" to safe- guard the plant. The SNP said the new transmission charges penalise Scottish generators, "costing Longannet £40 million a year and putting the plant's future in jeopardy". JA Longannet to close in 2016 after National Grid snub Seven days... "…it is a concerning time for all our people…" Scottish Power chief executive of retail and generation Neil Clitheroe comments on news that 430 jobs are under threat at Longannet power station 8.1m Ofgem issued its highest ever monthly amount of renewable Obligation certificates in december 2014.

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