Windfall tax harms oil and gas production and must be cut
In May last year, the UK Government introduced a windfall tax on the profits of oil and gas companies [...]
Why Norway’s views on energy security should ring alarm bells across Europe
Norway's energy security would appear to be a done deal, yet the past couple of years have been very [...]
Addressing the high real cost of renewable generation
Over the past few months we have been inundated with claims from interested parties that more renewables are the [...]
Do we need an independent system operator?
Calls are growing for the UK electricity system to be managed by an independent system operator ("ISO") whose activities are separate from the ownership of the wires themselves. Such a change would require nationalisation of the system operation activities of [...]
Subsidies central: electricity markets need fundamental reform to remove distortions
Subsidies and extra-market support now underpin every part of the UK electricity market, and as a result, some technologies benefit from double payments and others double charging, and since the double payments are going to diesel generators and the double charging [...]
Energy market innovation: timing is everything
The past few days have seen Tempus Energy surrendering its supply licence in order to focus purely on wholesale market trading, and Tidal Energy, the Welsh tidal stream technology company go into administration. Analysis by the Financial Times indicates [...]
Solar + Storage: the other side of the story
In this second post on the viability of solar + storage (first post here) I examine the conclusions of the Aurora Energy report, which presents a rather more optimistic view of the prospects of the combined technologies, claiming that [...]
Shining a light on solar + storage
Solar + storage, the combination of solar power and electricity storage, is seen by many as the Holy Grail of the energy markets and the key to a secure, low carbon future. However two recent reports provide conflicting views on whether [...]
Decarbonising with hydrogen: more hot air?
Hydrogen gas has been mooted as a possible solution to the challenge of decarbonising heating, one of the major sources along with electricity generation and transport, of carbon emissions. Notably, the city of Leeds in the UK is investigating [...]
Should the Carbon Price Floor be scrapped?
The Carbon Price Floor (“CPF”) is a UK government mechanism designed to support decarbonisation by making it more expensive to generate electricity with carbon-intensive fuels. The doubling in the CPF in 2015 from £9 / tonne to £18 / [...]
EFR: what we learned from the first auction
The first auction for enhanced frequency response (“EFR”) in the UK closed at the end of August, with just over 200 MW being secured by National Grid under 4-year contracts, at unexpectedly low prices. All of the winning sites [...]
Transmission matters: it’s not just about capacity
Transmission systems are key to delivering security of supply and yet tend to be treated as an afterthought - note for example Germany's massive deployment of renewables in the north of the country without a corresponding investment in the necessary [...]
Turndown DSR should be a no-brainer, so what’s holding it back?
Turndown DSR is what most people think of when demand-side response is mentioned, ie reduction of demand by consumers in response to either price signals or instructions from the system operator. As it involves reduced consumption and moving consumption [...]