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energy

Oil & Gas

Oil industry mergers predicted

The oil and gas industry could be set for a year of mergers and acquisitions following a rapid fall in prices, it has been forecast. Business consultants PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) said 2015 might even see the first “hostile takeover” in the sector in living memory. The oil price has fallen from 115 US dollars (£73) a barrel in the middle of this year to around 60 dollars (£38). Teams working at PwC set out their top five predictions for the year ahead against such a backdrop.

Europe

Global Energy Group has sharp rise in revenue

GEG (Global Energy Group) has seen a big rise in revenues only weeks after it confirmed job losses at its fabrication yard on the Cromarty Firth. The energy services firm said turnover had risen by 32% to £472million in the year end to March. The company’s profits have also jumped from £18.8million to £28million.

Europe

Cape wins five year contract extension with EDF Energy

Cape has been awarded a five year contract extension by EDF Energy for the supply of access, insulation and associated service in support of its eight nuclear power stations in the UK. The contract will see the company provide its services until 2021 in support of the energy suppliers. Around one fifth of the UK’s energy supply comes from EDF’s nuclear power stations, two coal fired power stations, combine gas cycle turbine power station and wind farms.

Renewables/Energy Transition

Solar power capacity rises by third

Scotland’s solar power capacity has increased by almost a third in the past year, according to new figures. More than 35,000 homes and 600 business premises now have solar photo-voltaic (PV) systems, December figures from regulator Ofgem show. The capacity of these systems has reached 140 megawatts, a rise of 32% from 106 megawatts last year and a huge increase on just 2 megawatts in 2010.

Other News

Cheniere Energy chief takes pay cut

The chief executive of Cheniere Energy has had his salary cut to $1 following a revolt by the company’s shareholders. Last year, Charif Souki took home a $142million pay package. However, Cheniere Energy said it was cutting his salary from $800,000 to just $1, but also approved a cash bonus of $2.4million.

Opinion

Opinion: We need to make sure Aberdeen retains its position as the energy capital

As Leader of Aberdeen City Council I felt it was important to try and take a lead on how politicians interact with the Oil and Gas Industry. Aberdeen is a global city that has achieved so much success thanks to the Oil and Gas industry being on our doorstep. It concern us all that the price of oil has dropped so heavily in such a short space of time and whilst we accept there will always be fluctuations in the price of oil I believe the time is now right for the industry and governments at all levels to work together to maintain confidence in the North Sea.

Renewables/Energy Transition

Scottish planning authorities receive scores of windfarm bids

Figures have revealed windfarm companies have submitted almost 200 planning bids for major developments in the past 18 months. The Freedom of Information statistics show the level of applications for windfarms of more than three turbines, with rural local authorities bearing the brunt of submissions. The data compiled also revealed the Western Isles received the most applications for windfarms in that time period, followed by Dumfries and Galloway and Highland.

Oil & Gas

Rosneft repays $7 billion and sees no need to buy dollars

OAO Rosneft (ROSN) repaid $7 billion in debt and said it is generating enough dollars to meet the obligations taken on to buy TNK-BP last year and become the world’s largest traded oil producer. The state-led company, hit by sanctions on Russia from the US and European Union limiting access to capital markets, said it has settled $24 billion this year in line with credit agreements. Rosneft has sufficient foreign currency to cover debt, Chief Executive Officer Igor Sechin said in a statement.

Renewables/Energy Transition

Windfarm developer paid £7.5million to turn off its wind turbines

A green energy company has been paid £7.5million – to switch off its turbines and stop producing electricity. This year alone Falck Renewables Wind Ltd received £2.8million not to generate power on 77 separate occasions. The firm was under fire from politicians and campaigners last night as it emerged it wants to extend its Millennium development in the hills above Loch Ness.

Other News

Former energy minister urges Scots firms to take up opportunities in Cuba

A new era for US-Cuba relations creates opportunities for Scottish businesses in the Caribbean, former energy minister Brian Wilson says. After half a century of Cold War acrimony, the US and Cuba are trying to restore diplomatic links in a historic shift that could revitalise the flow of money and people across the narrow waters that separate the two nations. It could mean an end to the US trade embargo which has stifled investment and hampered business in Cuba for more than 50 years.

Other News

Power auction ‘guarantees energy’

Electricity generators are to receive nearly £1 billion - at an average cost of £11 per household - to ensure enough power to meet peak demand in 2018/19. Energy Secretary Ed Davey said the Government’s first ever capacity market auction guaranteed energy supply at the lowest cost for consumers. Electricity providers were asked to bid into the capacity auction, promising if they win a contract that they will be available to provide power when needed.

Renewables/Energy Transition

Renewables match fossil fuel power

Electricity generated from renewables in Scotland has matched that produced from fossil fuels for the first time. Both sources accounted for 32% of total electricity generated in 2013, according to figures released by the UK Department of Energy and Climate Change. Scotland continues to be a net exporter of electricity, exporting 28% of generation compared to 26% in 2012.

Africa

South Sudan hires former Blackwater chief to restore war-hit oil

The former head of US security company Blackwater USA, Erik Prince, was hired by South Sudan to help repair damaged oil facilities and boost output cut by a year of civil war. Prince’s Frontier Services Group Ltd. (500), a Hong Kong-listed logistics and transportation company, is being paid 18.7 million euros ($23.3 million) by South Sudan’s Ministry of Petroleum to transport supplies to and perform maintenance on the production facilities at the oil fields, Chief Executive Officer Gregg Smith said. About 30 employees including pilots, engineers and logistics technicians have been using helicopters and airplanes to reach South Sudan’s oil fields since September, Smith said.

Oil & Gas

Senex finalises Surat Basin asset swap

Australian firm Senex Energy has completed the Surat Basin asset swap. The firm has exchanged its minority interests in the QGC operated eastern Surat Basin gas permits ATP 574 and PL 171 for a 100% interest in and operatorship of three QGC JV western Surat Basin permits.

Renewables/Energy Transition

EDF Energy Renewables sells stake in three UK wind farms to CGN

EDF Energy Renewables has sold a majority stake in three of its UK onshore wind farms to CGN (China General Nuclear Power Corporation). The company said the money from the sale will be used to make further investments in renewable projects in the UK. It will continue to own a 20% share in the three wind farms and also continue to run, maintain and operate the sites and provide asset management services for the new owners.

Markets

Repsol buys Talisman Energy in $8.3billion takeover deal

Repsol has reached an agreement to buy Talisman Energy in a deal worth an estimated $8.3billion. The move comes after a week of speculation the two companies were in talks once again. Earlier this year Repsol had confirmed it was looking at a potential transaction with the Canadian energy firm. A spokesman said the deal received the unanimous approval of both boards.

Renewables/Energy Transition

Scottish Government creates national marine plan

A new plan to boost the economy by exploiting the energy, food and recreational resources of the sea while protecting the environment has been launched by the Scottish Government. The first national marine plan sets out the Scottish Government’s vision for the sustainable development and use of the marine environment. The plan aims to ensure sustainable economic growth of a range of marine industries and protect and enhance the marine environment.

Other News

Panoro Energy chief exec steps down

The chief executive of Panoro Energy has stepped down from his role with the Norwegian company. Jan Kielland will leave his job immediately but will remain as an adviser on the board. The announcement follows the news that the company will also be relocating its headquarters from Oslo to London.

Other News

Three energy companies penalised by Ofgem

SSE and Scottish Power are to pay penalties totalling £4.15 million to charity following their failure to deliver energy efficiency measures on time. The suppliers were required to implement moves to help reduce bills for households in low-income areas by December 2012 but Scottish Power only delivered 70% of its obligation and SSE achieved 90.9%. Ofgem said it has secured a redress package of £2.4 million from Scottish Power and £1.75 million from SSE, with the payments going towards charities and funds that will benefit vulnerable consumers.

Renewables/Energy Transition

Millions of carbon emissions displaced by green energy

Almost 12 million tonnes of carbon emissions were displaced by green energy in Scotland last year. The reduction - an average of about a million tonnes each month - is the highest-ever recorded in the country. UK Government statistics show that Scotland’s renewable electricity industry displaced 11.9 million tonnes of CO2 in 2013, an increase of over 14% on the 10.4 million tonnes of CO2 displaced in Scotland by the sector in 2012.

Americas

US getting rid of oil addiction as price plummets in glut

The US is producing the most oil in 31 years, economic growth is picking up and crude prices are plunging. So why is Americans’ use of petroleum waning? As the US moves closer and closer to energy independence, greater fuel efficiency, changing demographics and an increase in renewables are altering the dynamic that in the past would have seen demand for gasoline climbing. Gross domestic product, the value of all goods and services produced in the US, grew at a 2.4 % pace in the third quarter from the year-earlier period. Oil consumption fell 0.3%, government data show.

Renewables/Energy Transition

Offshore wind farm backed by government

The UK government has granted permission for an offshore wind project which is expected to create up to 2,500 jobs. Hornsea Project One in North Lincolnshire will be made up of three offshore wind farms with a maximum capacity of 1200MW. Once built, it will generate enough electricity to power more than 800,000 homes.

Opinion

Opinion: Perspectives on crude pricing crisis

Stock markets, oil companies, service companies and investors are reeling from Saudi’s shock decision not to support a cut in OPEC production in order to balancesupply and support prices, and the consequent slump in oil prices. This stance is a radical departure from Saudi’s previous behaviour when supply and demand fell modestly out of balance. In the past, a few words of support have been enough to have the oil traders scurrying back to their desks to close their short positions. Why the change of policy on this occasion?

Other News

Legal challenge over power subsidy

A scheme to pay power companies to ensure there is enough back-up to meet peaks in electricity demand is facing a legal challenge over concerns it is an unlawful subsidy. The “capacity market” will see energy generators bidding for payments to bring power plants online to meet peak demand or to companies to reduce power use. But an independent company, Tempus Energy, is submitting a challenge to the European General Court on the grounds the scheme violates State Aid rules by prioritising fossil fuel energy generation over cheaper and cleaner efforts to reduce demand.