Turkish, German energy ministers vow to improve ties

Turkish Energy Minister Berat Albayrak and his German counterpart Peter Altmaier have vowed to improve relations between their countries after months-long tensions. Speaking at a joint news conference in Berlin on April 16, Albayrak voiced hope for a new era in relations after Chancellor Angela Merkel formed a new coalition government last month.

“For Turkey, Germany is a very important, indispensable partner,” he said. “As the new government took office in Germany, Turkey aims to foster a new era in relations, which would be more realistic, more rational, and benefiting both countries.”

Albayrak expressed hope that Turkey and Germany would further enhance their cooperation in economy, trade and energy sectors.

Altmaier, a close ally of Merkel, underlined the importance of closer cooperation between both countries at a time of growing uncertainty in the Middle East. “Minister Albayrak and I agreed to deepen our cooperation,” he said and highlighted great opportunities for both countries in areas of environmental policy, climate protection, and renewable energy.

Altmaier announced the Turkey-Germany Energy Forum, a major gathering of energy companies from both countries, will convene in the coming months.

Source: Hürriyet Daily News

“5 million tree campaign” from Turkey’s energy sector

Speaking at the signing ceremony of "5 Million Tree Campaign from Energy Sector", Turkey’s Energy and Natural Resources Minister Berat Albayrak said that energy resources should be used more rationally and efficiently.

Stating that energy investments constitute the most important leg of long-term strategies and energy sector will continue to be the locomotive of the economy from now on, Albayrak said:

"Within the scope of the National Energy and Mining Policy, we have realized concrete action plans in every field of energy. We have witnessed a period during which historical records in energy were broken in the last two years. We have a much brighter period ahead. Energy, economy and environment cannot be separated from each other because rational energy policies based on economic growth. So, every strategy of National Energy and Mining Policy has been prepared in accordance with environmentally friendly, sustainable and environmentally conscious, sustainable environmental policies based on energy politics. There are resources that we have today but do not belong solely to us. Future generations also have rights on these resources. Therefore, in our politics, such a misunderstanding as 'at any cost' in energy generation will never take place in our policies.”

Following the speeches, the protocol prepared by the coordination of the Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources was signed by ELDER Chairman Serhat Çeçen, GAZBİR Chairman Yaşar Arslan, PETDER Chairman Ahmet Erdem and Muzaffer Polat on behalf of KÖMÜRDER.

Turkey's geothermal target for 2030 quadruples

Turkey has already superseded its 2023 target for geothermal installed capacity which prompted a revision up of the 2030 target to 4000 megawatts (MW), Oguz Can, the general manager of the General Directorate of Renewable Energy said on Wednesday.

Speaking at the opening session of Geothermal Turkey Workshop and Congress, held in Ankara, Can said that Turkey had a geothermal target for 2023 of 1,000 MW of installed capacity which has already been achieved.

As "Turkey ranked fourth in the global geothermal energy league, in terms of installed capacity in 2017," works should continue without interruption, he advised. "We, as the Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources, think that geothermal energy is a sector in which strategic and important developments need to continue,” Can explain.

He also added that in terms of capacity, the introduction and creation of new areas should to be carried out systematically. He recommended that geothermal energy be used not only for electricity production but expanded out for use in the agricultural sector.

YEGM is the sole governmental body in Turkey to develop policies and strategies in the areas of renewable energy and energy efficiency. The Geothermal Turkey Workshop and Congress, organized by Turkey's Geothermal Electricity Power Plant Investors Association, started on Wednesday.

At the end of the two-day workshop, a report, which includes the analysis about the development of the geothermal energy market and the recommendations for the post-YEKDEM (Turkish Renewable Energy Resources Support Mechanism) period, will be published.

YEKDEM was launched in 2011 to use the country's vast clean energy resources efficiently and to support their development.

Source: AA

Turkish Electricity Day-Ahead Market

Liberalization process started with Electricity Market Law aimed for creation of an electricity market based on transparency, integrity, and competition; and integrated with other countries’ electricity markets. In line with this aim, numerous planned steps were carried out; and significant progress has been achieved for transforming stronger and more dynamic electricity market in which market participants take an active role and market operators manage and monitor by best means.

First step carried out for transformation of electricity market from a single buyer-single seller model to liberal and competitive model was transition to monthly 3 period financial settlement system on 1 July 2006. Next step was the start of operations for Day-Ahead Planning system on 1 December 2009. These transition periods have great importance regarding to transformation of electricity market into stronger and more dynamic structure. Parties took role in market operations and activities provided significant experience and foresight for new market models from their practices at earlier market stages. 1 December 2011 date became a milestone for Turkish Electricity Market and creation of currently used Day-Ahead Market system has been established which is deemed as biggest step towards formation of targeted electricity market structure. Establishment of Day-Ahead Market stimulated a new dynamism and vision for Turkish Electricity Market and allowed formation of market structure based on values of competition.

An important aspect of Day-Ahead Market brought to electricity market is chance of demand side to adjust its consumption based on price levels. With this, demand side has begun to actively participate to market thus has the chance of hedging itself to against fluctuating price formations. Another novelty introduced by Day-Ahead Market portfolios for market participants and market participants balancing their own portfolios. This allowed participants to present more balanced structure to the market and decrease of imbalances of generation/consumption units within their respective portfolios. Participation to Day-Ahead Market is not mandatory. Another important improvement introduced by Day-Ahead Market is financial settlement in daily basis and performance of daily clearing of payables/receivables due to commercial transactions at next day after commercial transactions date. This situation allowed market participants to receive revenues generated by sales of generated electricity on daily basis rather than monthly basis thus enables them to continue their investment without cash flow concerns. Last novelty introduced is the collateral mechanism which provided insurance for receivables of electricity market and market participants against possible cash-flow problems thus mitigating effects of cash-flow problems within the market.

Novelties introduced by Day-Ahead market allowed entrance of a new era for electricity markets. With this new era, the aim is to development of electricity markets based on strong foundations and carry out essential steps for development of electricity market above these profound foundations.

Source: Energy Exchange Istanbul

Economic value of energy efficiency can drive reductions in global CO2 emissions

Ambitious energy efficiency policies can keep global energy demand and energy-related carbon-dioxide (CO₂) emissions steady until 2050, according to a new report by the International Energy Agency. Perspectives for the Energy Transition: The Role of Energy Efficiency shows that despite a near-tripling of the world economy and a global population that increases by nearly 2.3 billion, end-use energy efficiency alone can deliver 35% of the cumulative CO₂ savings through 2050 required to meet global climate goals.

Global energy demand grew by 2.1% in 2017 according to IEA estimates, more than twice the growth rate in 2016. At the same time, global energy-related CO₂ emissions increased for the first time in three years, as improvements in global energy efficiency slowed down dramatically to 1.7%.

“Among all energy trends in 2017, the one that worries me the most is the slowdown in energy efficiency improvements,” said Dr Fatih Birol, Executive Director of the International Energy Agency. “The rate of improvement that we saw is around half of the rate that is required to meet clean energy transition goals.”

IEA analysis in Perspectives for the Energy Transition: The Role of Energy Efficiency demonstrates that on top of a wide range of benefits including cleaner air, energy security, productivity and trade balance improvements, there is a compelling economic case for energy efficiency. But, without further policy efforts, these benefits are unlikely to be realized as less than a third of global final energy demand is covered by efficiency standards today.

Realizing the full potential of energy efficiency will require a step-change in investments on the demand side of the energy equation, rising to USD 1.7 trillion per year through 2050, the majority of which is for energy efficiency and the electrification of transport. On the supply side, the focus is on reallocating investments towards renewables and other low-carbon technologies such as nuclear and carbon capture, utilization and storage.

While the scale of the demand-side investment required may appear challenging, fuel cost savings over the lifetime of most technologies are larger than the investment required, which implies a strong economic benefit that arises from energy efficiency investment. Although there are still many low-hanging fruits that can pay back their initial investment quickly, payback periods are often too long to attract investment from consumers and businesses. Effective policy frameworks are needed to overcome economic and non-economic barriers to energy efficiency and to incentivize adoption of more efficient technologies.

Perspectives for the Energy Transition: The Role of Energy Efficiency demonstrates a compelling economic case for energy efficiency as being essential to make the energy transition affordable, faster and more beneficial to all. The IEA recommends that governments adopt a strategic approach to energy efficiency, supported by well-designed efficiency policies and a strong focus on implementation and enforcement.

Source: IEA

Industry maturity and competition for green assets bring €51bn of wind energy investments in 2017

Europe invested a total of €51.2bn in wind energy in 2017.  The development of new farms accounted for €22.3bn of this. This is according to WindEurope’s ‘Financing and Investment Trends’ report released this week. The rest of the investment went on the refinancing of existing wind farms, the acquisition of projects and of companies involved in wind and on public market fundraising. The total investment figure was 9% up on 2016.

The €22bn invested in new wind farms was down on the €28bn invested in 2016.  But it covered more capacity – 11.5 GW compared to 10.3 GW – reflecting the falling costs of wind energy.

WindEurope Chief Policy Officer Pierre Tardieu: “With €51.2bn, wind energy accounted for half of all power sector investments in 2017. It’s delivering more capacity for less money. This is largely due to increased competition in auctions and technology advances that are driving cost reductions in the supply chain.”

The maturity of the wind energy sector and the competitive pressure of auctions is changing the way wind projects are financed.  Power producers still carry projects on balance sheet through Final Investment Decision (FID).  But refinancing and the sale of minority stakes in projects are coming in much earlier in the process.

And more investors are entering projects as equity partners, particularly from the financial services industry.  These partnerships allow power producers to ‘recycle’ capital to finance new wind farms.  A healthy pipeline of projects is diversifying the pool of investors: 82 lenders were active in 2017, including multilateral financial institutions, export credit agencies and commercial banks from both Europe and Asia.

Green bonds are emerging as an alternative source of debt. This is also helping risk-averse institutional investors to access the wind sector. Green bonds raised €17.5bn in 2017, the highest rate of issuance in the last five years. €8.5bn were in corporate renewables portfolios, €7bn in wind energy and €1.9bn in transmission lines. This shows investors have more and more trust in the industry and are confident they will see a healthy return.

Investors are also going further afield: 20 European countries made investments in wind in 2017 compared to 16 in 2016 – though Germany and the UK accounted for half of all new FIDs. Investments in Southern and Eastern Europe remain low, representing just 16% of the total new assets financed in Europe (€3.5bn). A lack of regulatory stability is largely responsible for this.

“The outlook for 2018 is strong with investment volumes expected to increase,” Tardieu added. “The auction system for wind energy is settling down, and projects that have won auctions are now reaching Final Investment Decision. The investment outlook up to 2020 is strong but there remains a lack of visibility on new projects after 2020. Having this visibility throughout Europe is crucial to providing the right investment signals”.

Source: Wind Europe

World's first electrified road for charging vehicles opens in Sweden

The world’s first electrified road that recharges the batteries of cars and trucks driving on it has been opened in Sweden. About 2km (1.2 miles) of electric rail has been embedded in a public road near Stockholm, but the government’s roads agency has already drafted a national map for future expansion.

Sweden’s target of achieving independence from fossil fuel by 2030 requires a 70% reduction in the transport sector.

The technology behind the electrification of the road linking Stockholm Arlanda airport to a logistics site outside the capital city aims to solve the thorny problems of keeping electric vehicles charged, and the manufacture of their batteries affordable.

Energy is transferred from two tracks of rail in the road via a movable arm attached to the bottom of a vehicle. The design is not dissimilar to that of a Scalextric track, although should the vehicle overtake, the arm is automatically disconnected.

The electrified road is divided into 50m sections, with an individual section powered only when a vehicle is above it. When a vehicle stops, the current is disconnected. The system is able to calculate the vehicle’s energy consumption, which enables electricity costs to be debited per vehicle and user.

The “dynamic charging” – as opposed to the use of roadside charging posts – means the vehicle’s batteries can be smaller, along with their manufacturing costs.

A former diesel-fueled truck owned by the logistics firm, PostNord, is the first to use the road.

Hans Säll, chief executive of the eRoadArlanda consortium behind the project, said both current vehicles and roadways could be adapted to take advantage of the technology.

In Sweden there are roughly half a million kilometers of roadway, of which 20,000km are highways, Säll said.

“If we electrify 20,000km of highways that will definitely be enough,” he added. “The distance between two highways is never more than 45km and electric cars can already travel that distance without needing to be recharged. Some believe it would be enough to electrify 5,000km.”

At a cost of €1m per kilometer, the cost of electrification is said to be 50 times lower than that required to construct an urban tram line.

Säll said: “There is no electricity on the surface. There are two tracks, just like an outlet in the wall. Five or six centimeters down is where the electricity is. But if you flood the road with salt water then we have found that the electricity level at the surface is just one volt. You could walk on it barefoot.”

National grids are increasingly moving away from coal and oil and battery storage is seen as crucial to a changing the source of the energy used in transportation.

The Swedish government, represented by a minister at the formal inauguration of the electrified road on Wednesday, is in talks with Berlin about a future network. In 2016, a 2km stretch of motorway in Sweden was adapted with similar technology but through overhead power lines at lorry level, making it unusable for electric cars.

Source: The Guardian

Global Solar PV Installations to Surpass 104 GW in 2018

The global solar PV market will add over 100 gigawatts of capacity for the first time in 2018 — and there is no looking back.

According to the latest Global Solar Demand Monitor from GTM Research, installations will reach 104 gigawatts this year, representing 6 percent annual growth. After that, annual installations will easily exceed the 100-gigawatt milestone through at least 2022.

The year-over-year growth is due in part to geographic diversification, as the top four markets are anticipated to collectively decline by 7 percent.

Installations in China will fall from 53 gigawatts in 2017 to 48 gigawatts in 2018, although China alone will account for 47 percent of global demand this year.

For the first time in China’s history, annual distributed solar installations (<20 megawatts) are expected to surpass 50 percent of the nation's annual installed capacity.

"Trade-restrictive measures continue to be a barrier to growth in the U.S. and India," said GTM Research solar analyst Rishab Shrestha. "Although the availability of tariff-free modules in the U.S. and the announcement that compensation will be provided to Indian developers negatively impacted by tariffs and duties provides some encouragement." According to the report, the U.S. market is expected to add 10.6 gigawatts of solar PV in 2018 while India will install 7.1 gigawatts.

In 2018, Latin America will add 5.6 gigawatts and the MENA region (Middle East and Africa) will add 4.7 gigawatts, representing explosive year-over-year growth of 61 percent and 281 percent, respectively. Up to 1 gigawatt of projects awarded through Mexico’s A1 auction are expected to come online this year, as is Egypt’s 1.8-gigawatt Benban solar park. These two markets will top their respective regions in 2018.

According to the analysis, Egypt and Brazil will become gigawatt-scale markets for the first time in 2018. This year will also see the re-emergence Spain. Meanwhile, France, which will firmly establish itself as one of Europe’s top three largest markets.

Source: Greentech Media


Global Energy Storage
2017 Year-in-Review and 2018-2022 Outlook

2017 was one of the most exciting years yet for energy storage, as several markets saw formative policy developments, interesting business models materialize and a rush of corporate merger and acquisition activity.

This report provides an overview of changes in the global energy storage markets in 2017, as well as expectations and outlooks for 2018 through 2022.

What's included in the report:

  • Key developments by market
  • Global energy storage outlook
  • Energy Storage Service overview

Please click here to read the full report.