Germany Power Report Q4 2012
From this quarter BMI’s Power service will focus chiefly on thermal sources, hydropower and nuclear electricity, while developments pertinent to the green segment will be discussed in depth by our Renewables service. That said, we continue to provide a detailed overview of the dynamics affecting the power sector. Despite a year having passed since the German government’s U-turn on nuclear power, the country is still looking for an appropriate strategy that will provide sufficient electricity. Such a strategy must also allow the country to respect its carbon emissions commitments and limit price rises. While natural gas appears likely to be the replacement fuel from an environmental perspective, cheap coal remains the most profitable way to produce electricity. On the greener side of the power spectrum, Germany has retained its position as Europe’s bellwether for renewable energy, but not without controversy – owing primarily to the high costs associated with the deployment of these technologies.
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Iran Power Report Q4 2012
Plans to develop Iran’s nuclear capacity are central to the country’s power industry and its ability to meet its energy requirements. Given huge international resistance, there is no certainty of continuing nuclear availability, let alone additional reactors. Efforts to halt the nuclear programme will persist and sanctions will make it hard to maintain a high level of investment. Iran would benefit from more rapid development of its renewables potential as a means of reducing oil and gas dependency. Conventional thermal sources are expected to remain the dominant fuel for electricity generation, with many of the power projects that are currently under construction due to use gas. Expansion of Iran’s nuclear capacity is planned, but external political resistance means it is far from certain whether further reactors will be built. Talks continue with the aim of ending the stalemate but, at the time of writing, no breakthrough was imminent.
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Kuwait Power Report Q4 2012
Kuwait is likely to remain dependent almost exclusively on oil and gas for its energy needs for the foreseeable future. Following the 2011 Fukushima tragedy in Japan, nuclear energy has largely dropped out of usage, while renewable energy remains only a very minor segment of the country’s energy mix. Much of the planned new generating capacity is gas-fired, with oil often used as a back-up fuel. The aim is to make more of the country’s oil available for export, even if this leads to a growing reliance on imported gas. Hints at a major renewables programme have yet to convince industry insiders. Low power costs mean that project economics are unlikely to attract foreign investors, so Kuwait looks set to go it alone in meeting growing power demand.
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