Utility Week

Utility Week 20th October 2017

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4 | 20TH - 26TH OCTOBER 2017 | UTILITY WEEK STORY BY NUMBERS Seven days... National media Norway slashes development funds for CCS by 90 per cent The latest bid to develop technol- ogy that traps and stores carbon emissions is already in doubt aer a key European partner scaled back its plans, days aer UK ambitions were reignited. Norwegian ministers slashed the expected state investment in a trailblazing industrial carbon capture project by 90 per cent in response to growing political doubts over its costs. The swinge- ing cut emerged the same day UK ministers pledged to work with international partners in a second bid to develop a carbon capture and storage industry, aer the failure of its £1 billion scheme two years ago. The Telegraph, 14 October Hinkley Point C is being used to subsidise Trident programme The government is using the "extremely expensive" Hinkley Point C nuclear power station to cross-subsidise Britain's nuclear weapon arsenal, according to senior scientists. In evidence submitted to the Public Accounts Committee, which is currently investigating the nuclear plant deal, scientists from Sussex University said the costs of the Trident programme could be "unsupportable" without "an effective subsidy from electricity consumers to military nuclear infrastructure". They said this was because Hin- kley would "maintain a large-scale national base of nuclear skills". The Guardian, 12 October Energy price cap could last until 2023, says BEIS T he government's proposed cap on energy bills could be in place until the end of 2023 under dra legislation published last week. The Domestic Gas and Elec- tricity (Tariff Cap) Bill, which has been published for consulta- tion, would give Ofgem powers to impose an absolute cap to be applied to households across the UK, apart from Northern Ireland, that are on standard variable tariffs (SVTs) and other default tariffs. According to the Department for Business, Energy and Indus- trial Strategy (BEIS), the cap would be a temporary measure with effect until the end of 2020. However, it could be extended up to the end of 2023 "at the lat- est" if Ofgem advises it should. BEIS said the cap would be subject to constant review but it would urge Ofgem to impose it "as soon as practicable" aer the legislation is passed. When setting the level of the cap, the energy regulator should have regard to the need to "pro- tect customers, create incen- tives for suppliers to improve efficiency, enable effective competition for domestic supply contracts, maintain incentives for customers to switch, and ensure efficient suppliers are able to finance their activities". The government estimates the cap will affect more than 18 million households on SVT or default tariffs. Alex Neill, Which? manag- ing director of home products and services, said: "For millions of consumers worried about their energy bills, a cap might sound like a positive move. However, the government must guard against any unintended consequences that undermine customer service and push up prices as a whole." Gillian Guy, chief executive of Citizens Advice, backed the deci- sion to opt for an absolute rather than relative cap, as proposed by backbench MP John Penrose. She said: "We agree with the government that an absolute cap is a better option than a relative cap, and will help to ensure the market remains competitive." DB "The government has clearly done this on the hoof. Messing about with a price cap isn't the answer, and will probably do more harm than good" Dale Vince, chief executive of Ecotricity, responds to the government's draft price cap bill National Grid raises winter margin forecast National Grid has raised its forecast for the capacity margin this com- ing winter in the latest edition of its annual winter outlook report. 10.3% Expected capacity margin for winter 2017/18. 6.2- 8.2% Preliminary predic- tion from June. 66.1GW Derated capacity expected to be available. 2.4GW Forecast for net imports via interconnectors. 62.3GW Forecast for average cold spell peak underlying demand.

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