Can UK power market reform replace the capacity market?

National Grid helicopter inspecting power lines

The UK has just completed another auction for a large amount of backup power capacity. The country’s capacity market scheme will cost ratepayers many billions of pounds. Independent consultant Gerard Wynn wonders if they are really necessary. … [Read more...]

A rush to subsidies as power plants in Europe face existential threat

Abengoa solar power plant in Spain (photo Wim Hertog)

So-called capacity markets are driving what appears to be a major new trend in energy policy across Europe: more public subsidies for electric utilities, writes independent consultant Gerard Wynn. In a new report for the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA), Wynn takes a critical look at capacity payments in Spain, which cost taxpayers €1 billion annually. Meanwhile, the UK just forked out £1.2 billion in a capacity … [Read more...]

The big Dutch coal mistake and the future of coal in Europe

new RWE coal power plant Eemshaven the Netherlands

RWE, Uniper and Engie have fairly quietly written off billions of euros on three brand new coal power plants in the Netherlands, according to a new report from independent consultant Gerard Wynn for the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA). In an article for his own website, the Energy and Carbon Blog, Wynn notes that the Dutch experience means no new coal power plants are likely to be built again any time soon in Europe. … [Read more...]