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Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Green Investment Group and Iberdrola to Co-develop 3.3 GW offshore wind portfolio in Japan

Macquarie’s Green Investment Group (GIG) announced a joint venture with Iberdrola, a leading global energy company, to co-develop a 3.3 GW portfolio...
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Green Investment Group and Iberdrola to Co-develop 3.3 GW offshore wind portfolio in Japan


Macquarie’s Green Investment Group (GIG) announced a joint venture with Iberdrola, a leading global energy company, to co-develop a 3.3 GW portfolio of six fixed bottom and floating offshore wind projects in Japan.

The offshore wind projects were initiated and have been developed to date through Macquarie’s renewable energy platform, Acacia Renewables. Iberdrola will acquire Acacia Renewables and take forward the existing offshore wind development pipeline alongside GIG as a joint venture. GIG will hold an equal share in the six projects with Iberdrola, and provide development and commercial advisory services to the portfolio. Under Iberdrola’s ownership, Acacia will focus on the development of offshore wind projects, while its existing onshore wind development business will be taken forward by GIG.

Macquarie has a longstanding commitment to Japan’s renewable energy sector and has supported the country’s ambitions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 26% by 2030 since 2013, through the development of 3.7 GW of offshore wind and solar projects. This is the first transaction to be delivered by Macquarie through its Green Investment Group platform in Japan.
GIG is a leading global investor and developer of green infrastructure assets with a mission to accelerate the green transition. To date, GIG has supported 16 offshore wind projects globally, representing almost 5.5 GW of capacity in construction and operations, and is currently developing c. 8 GW of offshore wind capacity across Asia.

The joint venture brings together GIG’s significant offshore wind expertise and long-term commitment to the Japanese market with Iberdrola’s technical capabilities and operational excellence. This is GIG’s second joint venture with Iberdrola. The partners currently co-own the 714 MW East Anglia ONE offshore wind farm, based off the UK’s Suffolk coast.

Southeast Asia’s Wind Power Needs US$14 Billion New Investments By 2030

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Southeast Asia’s wind power sector requires at least US$14 billion of investments by 2030, says Wood Mackenzie. This is to support the 8.9 gigawatts (GW) of new wind power capacity that Wood Mackenzie expects to be added between 2020 and 2029.

With a population exceeding 650 million and average annual power demand growing at 8% until 2030, Southeast Asia is one of the world’s fastest growing power markets. To support this growth, the region’s governments are setting renewable energy targets to diversify their energy mix to be more energy self-sufficient.

Wood Mackenzie principal analyst Robert Liew said: “Currently there are about 20.7 GW of planned wind power capacity in the pipeline, but we think less than half or 8.9 GW will be realised by 2030. The coronavirus pandemic has slowed development in 2020, as border closures delay equipment transportation and prevented foreign technical staff support in these nascent Southeast Asian markets.

“Vietnam has risen to become the shining star in the region’s race to add wind power capacity. It alone accounts for 66% of new capacity expected to be added by the end of the decade.”

The surge in projects in Vietnam is driven by the government’s decision to upgrade the wind feed-in-tariff (FIT) in 2018 to 85 US$ per megawatt hour (MWh) for onshore wind and 98 US$/MWh for intertidal offshore wind with a 2021 deadline for both FITs, though a potential extension to 2023 is still to be decided.

Power demand is recovering, and Southeast Asian countries will be competing to attract large-scale investments to spur economic recovery. This will provide opportunities for governments to push ahead with their new national power plans with expanded roles for more renewables.

Liew said: “There is potential for more upside if Malaysia and Myanmar start utility-scale wind development and offshore wind development occurs in markets outside Vietnam.”

WindEurope Elects Philippe Kavafyan, MHI Vestas Offshore Wind CEO, As New Chairman


WindEurope’s Board of Directors has elected Philippe Kavafyan, CEO of MHI Vestas Offshore Wind, as the association’s new Chair for an 18-month term. Kavafyan takes over the Chair from Vattenfall’s Gunnar Groebler. The Board also appointed Nicolas Couderc, EDF Renewables Executive Vice-President, as the Association’s new Vice Chair.

The coming two years will be crucial for wind energy. The EU Commission wants renewables to accelerate the EU’s economic recovery post-COVID-19. And it has just tabled a new greenhouse gas emission reduction target of at least 55% by 2030. The EU is now on a credible trajectory towards climate neutrality by 2050. The wind industry is ready to deliver and willing to engage in shaping the policies to deploy the required wind volumes.

Commenting on his appointment, Philippe Kavafyan said: “The European wind industry shall play a central role to address two major challenges we are facing: the economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 health crisis, and a fair transition to a sustainable energy system. As wind power is turning mainstream, as an industry, we have a responsibility to ensure an inclusive path to a decarbonised future. The wind expertise, the skills, the supply chain are unique in Europe. With the renewed ambition of the economic recovery plans, they will be ready to navigate the impending crisis. I am honoured to be elected by my peers to represent the full value chain of wind energy in Europe, a successful industry contributing, with jobs and innovation, to a recognised leadership in the world.”

Philippe Kavafyan, an engineer by background, is serving as CEO at MHI Vestas Offshore Wind since 2018. Before that he worked as Director Offshore Wind for the French company Orano. He also held positions at EDF, GE and Adwen.

Nicolas Couderc added: “I am honoured to get the Board of Directors support. As Vice-chairman of WindEurope, I look forward to working with the European wind industry to accelerate the energy transition and to build a low carbon future”

Nicolas Couderc holds the position Executive Vice-President for France at EDF Renewables since 2016. He has previously served as Head of Strategy and M&A. He started his career in the finance sector as a university teacher, then as a market economist.

WindEurope CEO Giles Dickson said: “Through his exceptional work at MHI Vestas, Philippe Kavafyan has shown his vision for the energy transition – and delivered on it. He’s made MHI Vestas a leading player in offshore wind in Europe and around the world. We’re delighted to welcome such an experienced leader as our new Chair. His extensive knowledge of European energy will help shape the next steps on wind energy’s path to become Europe’s leading source of electricity”.

Thanking Gunnar Groebler for his work, Giles Dickson said: “Over the last 18 months Gunnar Groebler has contributed hugely to the improved visibility of the wind industry. He has helped position wind as the “go to” source of power that the EU now sees being half of Europe’s electricity in 2050. On behalf of WindEurope, I’d like to thank Gunnar for his excellent service and commitment. I’d also like to thank Nordex’s Tony Adam who has been an excellent Vice Chair”.

MERC Receives Petition On Wrongful Denial of Open Access


Maharashtra Electricity Regulatory Commission (MERC) has recently passed an order on Case of AMJ Land Holdings Ltd. seeking directions against Maharashtra State Electricity Distribution Co. Ltd. on account of wrongful denial of Open Access for January and May 2017 .

AMJ has three Wind Power Plants  having an aggregate generation capacity of 4.6 MW located at Satara and Sangli District and inter alia, supplies power under OA to its group companies i.e. Pudumjee Paper Products Ltd. and Jehangir Hospital. 

Main prayers of AMJ were : To Direct MSEDCL to grant OA to the extent sought by Jehangir Hospital and PPPL for the months of January, 2017 and May, 2017 and to direct MSEDCL to issue credit notes to the Petitioner for the power injected in the grid which is unadjusted in OA for the months of January, 2017 from its machine S-68 and May, 2017 from its machines S-32, S-68 and JTH-85 .

Commission observes that the above dispensation on resultant power flow coupled with annual banking facility available for RE generators is not being used in the spirit in which such dispensation was provided and it notes that the banking facility is intended to be used for adjusting the infirm injection only at its margin so as to maintain grid discipline at all times. 

Wind generation is a must run generation and also before notification of MERC (Forecasting, Scheduling and Deviation Settlement for Solar and Wind Generation) Regulations, 2018, Wind Generation was non-schedulable. 

Commission further notes that both the consumers, Jehangir Hospital and PPPL had sought MTOA from 1 May 2017 to 31 March 2018. However, due to difficulty faced by the consumers in making online payment, the MTOA Applications could not be processed immediately and the consumers were able to get the MTOA from June 2017 onwards only. The Petitioner has sought the directions to MSEDCL to grant OA to the extent sought by both these consumers for May 2017. 

The Commission states that MTOA for May 2017 was not denied or rejected by MSEDCL, rather the consumers could not avail the same as the online payment transaction could not be completed and  the MTOA Application should  be submitted to the Nodal Agency between three months to 12 months prior to the intended commencement of OA.

The Commission concluded by stating that it does not deem it necessary to issue any direction to MSEDCL for grant of OA for May 2017.

To know more refer to the document below:

Akuo & Partners Complete Financing of 93 MW Onshore Windfarm in Illinois


A consortium led by Akuo and composed of Harrison Street, Morgan Stanley, and GE Energy Financial Services (GE EFS) today announced financial close for Bennington Wind, a 93.06 MW onshore wind development project located approximately 100 miles (160 km) southwest of Chicago in Bennington Township in Marshall County, Illinois.

Situated in the eastern part of the Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO) regional transmission operator territory, the project will benefit from proximity to major population centers, an excellent wind resource, and limited grid congestion. GE Renewable Energy will supply thirty-three 2.82 MW turbines. Akuo will commence construction later this month, and the wind farm is projected to reach operational status in Q4 2021.

The project will produce enough electricity to power approximately 33,277 households and will offset the equivalent of 303,815 tons of carbon dioxide during each year of operation. This is the equivalent 9,114,441 tons of avoided carbon emissions over project’s 30 year life. The project has been in development by Akuo since 2016.

The Bennington Wind project marks Harrison Street’s fourth investment in a U.S. wind farm and the first with Akuo.

“With this project, Akuo continues to be a partner of choice for firms interested in the direct purchase of renewable energy to combat carbon emissions and climate change,” says Eric Scotto, CEO Akuo. “Akuo is honored to be chosen by Morgan Stanley to play crucial part in meeting their sustainability goals. This is the 10th deal worldwide completed by Akuo with a corporate buyer

ADLS Deutsche Windtechnik Passes Type Approval Test – Installations Can Begin

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Deutsche Windtechnik has successfully passed the type approval test for its aircraft detection light system (ADLS) for wind
turbines. This means Deutsche Windtechnik’s transponder-based ADLS system is ready for market launch and is now available for ADLS retrofitting on wind turbines of all leading system technologies.

This early certification puts Deutsche Windtechnik in an excellent position to enable operators to retrofit with ADLS in a timely and flexible manner. “Our ADLS was developed to fulfil the requirements of the AVV as well as to ensure eligibility for the EEG remuneration. We guarantee this, for example, through extensive logging of all ADLS operating states. After the ADLS is installed, we continue to provide support for the system with our experienced technicians,” said Jasper Salzwedel, Senior Sales Manager at Deutsche Windtechnik. The certification means that Deutsche Windtechnik’s ADLS can be installed on turbines from different manufacturers as planned. “Our ADLS is also the right choice for operators with mixed portfolios: Only one ADLS needs
to be installed, even if the wind farm comprises different types of turbines,” Jasper Salzwedel said.

Matthias Brandt, Director at Deutsche Windtechnik, added: “Karl Keusgen, who was in charge of developing the ADLS at Deutsche Windtechnik, and his team have done the operator market a great service. Their tireless efforts have ensured an increase in the number of available alternatives. As a result, we have a more flexible, customizable solution that can be implemented more quickly.”

The Nordex Group Wins Order In The USA For 312 MW

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The Nordex Group has received a 312 MW order in the USA. For a wind farm in Texas, the manufacturer will supply 65 N149/4.0-4.5 turbines in the 4.8 MW operating mode. Installation is scheduled to start in May 2021 and the wind farm will be connected to the grid later the same year.

The project and customer are undisclosed.

“This order underscores again the growing interest of our US customers in the powerful turbines of the Delta4000 series. With regards to the N149/4.0-4.5 turbines with a 4.8 MW rated capacity, the Nordex Group is now delivering and installing 265 units, amounting meanwhile to 1,272 MW, of this model alone in North America. These turbines exceed the average nominal
capacity of last year’s installed onshore turbines by more than 2 MW in the USA,” says Patxi Landa, CSO of the Nordex Group.

According to association figures, the average nominal capacity of newly installed onshore wind turbines in North America last year was around 2.55 MW, and not a single turbine with 4 MW or more was installed. Also in the first half 2020 the vast majority of turbines installed are rated between 2 MW to less than 3 MW.

According to the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), however, the volume of planned projects with turbines with 4 MW or more increased to 5,079 MW in the USA as of mid-2020, reflecting a trend towards more projects using powerful machines in the near future.

Actis Wins Climate Change Impact Project of The Year at the 2020 Environmental Finance IMPACT Awards


Actis has won the climate change impact project/investment of the year at the inaugural 2020 Environmental Finance IMPACT Awards.

The award is in recognition of Actis’ role in developing Parc Eolien Taiba N’Diaye, Senegal’s first large scale wind energy project. Once fully constructed, the project will provide 158.7 megawatts of clean, reliable power to Senegal’s electricity grid, a 15% increase in electricity generation capacity for the country. The wind farm has been developed by energy platform Lekela Power, which is 60%-owned by Actis, and will help offset around 6 million tonnes of carbon emissions and will create 600 employment opportunities during the peak of its construction phase.

Torbjorn Caesar, Senior Partner at Actis, commented: ”Parc Eolien Taiba N’Diaye represents the tangible, measurable benefits we aim to bring to local communities and to the environment. Projects such as this best exemplify our belief that values drive value and we are delighted that the impact such investment has on the climate has been recognised by Environmental Finance.

Parc Eolien Taiba N’Diaye is also a key project in Lekela Power’s portfolio, helping the platform towards its target of delivering 1,000 megawatts of renewable energy across Africa over the next five years.”

Shami Nissan, Head of Responsible Investment at Actis, added: “Senegal has some of the highest electricity prices in the world due to its dependence on costly fossil fuel imports. Actis is therefore proud to have been the lead developer on a project that will deliver cheap, clean power for over 2 million people. Parc Eolien Taiba N’Diaye best exemplifies our approach to responsible investment, which centres on delivering shared value for all our stakeholders.”

Earlier this year, Actis received the highest rating score for the fourth consecutive year in the UN Principles for Responsible Investment (“PRI”) independent assessment. Actis also won Private Equity Manager of the Year at the Environmental Finance 2020 Sustainable Investment Awards.

Robust Implementation Of 2030 National Plans Is Key To Deliver EU Targets

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The European Commission has presented a first assessment of the final 2030 National Energy & Climate Plans (NECPs) submitted by the 27 EU Member States. The assessment shows the NECPs have some quite good volume commitments for the expansion of renewables. But that they’re still missing a lot of detail on how Governments will deliver those commitments.

The NECPs are the framework within which national Governments plan their climate and energy goals, policies and measures for 2021-30. Governments are obliged to develop these Plans under the 2018 Clean Energy Package. And they have to include a detailed list of actions they intend to take by 2030.

The NECP process aims to ensure the EU meets its 2030 targets for greenhouse gas emission reductions, renewables, energy efficiency and electricity interconnectors. The EU Commission will monitor the progress towards these targets.

In its assessment of the 27 NECPs the Commission has painted an optimistic picture. It says the final Plans are substantially more ambitious than the 2018 draft ones including on renewable energy volumes. And that the EU will surpass the current 32% renewable energy target. Yet the Commission points out that Member States need to do additional work on the implementation measures. In particular, it invites them to increase the predictability on planned tenders and to streamline permitting procedures for new and repowered projects.

WindEurope CEO, Giles Dickson, stresses: “The Commission analysis highlights the key point about the NECPs. The numbers look good on paper. But they’re short on detail of how to deliver those numbers. There are nice volumes for the build-out of onshore and offshore wind. But the Plans are thin on how Governments will simplify the permitting of new farms. And many Governments can’t deliver their volumes without simplifying permitting. Many NECPs are also lacking detail on the schedule and design of the auctions Governments will run to support new renewables. It’s fine to say the NECP commitments add up to 33% renewable energy by 2030. But without some more serious homework in the national capitals, the NECPs won’t deliver that”.  

The EU Commission will present more detailed country-specific recommendations in October 2020. Based on their final NECPs, each country must now submit a progress report to the Commission every two years on the status of implementation of its national Plan.

WindGuard Certification Offers Mobile Testing Of Dynamic Performance

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WindGuard Certification now offers a complete package of electrical characteristic measurements on power generating units, such as wind turbines, photovoltaic systems, energy storage facilities and internal combustion engines. For this purpose, the experts from Varel have just introduced a new mobile test unit for dynamic performance. WindGuard Certification offers manufacturers not only the certification of prototypes, but also all measurements necessary to obtain the required proofs according to VDE-AR-N 4105, VDE-AR-N 4110, VDE-AR-N 4120 and IEC 61400-21-1.

The new test unit allows fault-ride-through (FRT) test procedures to verify dynamic grid support according to applicable guidelines such as FGW TR3, IEC61400-21-1 and the latest revision of DIN VDE V 0124-100 published in June 2020. This test standard requires a proof of grid stabilizing abilities even on smaller power generating units intended to be connected to the low-voltage grid. “Thanks to the compact design of our new mobile test equipment, we can now conduct the required dynamic performance tests directly at the customer’s site or at the location of his prototype”, says Damian Slowinski, head of testing laboratory at WindGuard Certification. “Our FRT test system simulates fault conditions in the public grid. Using the recorded measurement data, we check whether the power generating unit reacts as required and if it returns to normal operation after fault clearance without disconnecting from the grid.” The unit allows the configuration of a wide range of fault conditions – for example, the undervoltage drop depth and the overvoltage excess are variably adjustable. Even two-phase faults are possible.

“Thanks to our mobile testing service, our customers gain notable time and cost advantages,” Damian Slowinski adds, “it is no longer necessary to transport the test object to a stationary test laboratory. In addition, during development of the new test unit, we paid particular attention to ensuring a quick configuration and execution of individual tests. Furthermore, the new
evaluation software developed by WindGuard Certification provides real-time feedback. Finally, the entire dynamic performance tests can be completed in just a few days.

The new mobile test unit allows verifying the dynamic performance ability of power generating units up to a nominal capacity of 1 MW in accordance with all current guidelines and standards.