Genesis expects to play key role in wind and geothermal generation while expanding into grid-scale solar power

In what   it  sees  as  a pivotal year  for  the  electricity  sector and New Zealand’s climate agenda, Genesis Energy says there is significant investment in renewables being made, the Emissions Reduction Plan is due from government and Budget 2022 will allocate capital to the climate response.

Genesis believes it has a key role to play with agreements for wind and geothermal generation, expanding its portfolio into grid-scale solar, and continuing  work to ensure back-up generation at Huntly supports the transition.

Reporting its  half-year result  (a 63% rise  in  net profit of $84.7m), Genesis said the result underlines the company’s momentum as it invests for future growth in new renewable generation and enhanced customer experiences.

Chief Executive Marc England said Genesis has delivered another strong result while building capability for the future. Continue reading “Genesis expects to play key role in wind and geothermal generation while expanding into grid-scale solar power”

If recriminations could be turned into energy and stored, maybe the next power blackout could be avoided

Recriminations  flew  after  the  power blackout   on  Monday,  one  of the coldest  nights in  New Zealand.

Energy Minister  Megan  Woods blamed  a  market  failure  and “commercial decisions”. According  to  the  Dominion-Post,  she  pointed  the  finger  at  Genesis  Energy, which had not  turned on one of the  Huntly power station’s units.

The  government is  said to be  demanding  answers  from the industry.

Genesis chief executive Mark England said the company had been made a scapegoat and he will be asking the minister why.

Transpower has apologised after it asked lines companies to cut power in some areas to handle all-time-high demand for electricity, combined with insufficient generation, on one of the coldest nights of the year.

 Transpower CEO Alison Andrew said there was  enough generation to cover predicted demand on Monday evening. Continue reading “If recriminations could be turned into energy and stored, maybe the next power blackout could be avoided”

Great news from Kupe (if drilling permits could be acquired) – NZ has bigger gas and oil reserves than previously reported

In these  days  of  doom  and  gloom  over the  impact of the  Covid-19  pandemic, any outfit  which can trigger  a  ray  of optimism   deserves a  salute  from  the  rest  of the  country.

Fisher & Paykel  Healthcare, for  example,   reported  this  week that in the  four months to  July 31 it recorded a 390% lift  in the  sales of  its hospital  respiratory care  products,    compared with  sales in the same period  the previous  financial  year.  This  remarkable  performance reflects a changing trend in clinical practice to lead with nasal high flow therapy for treatment of Covid-19 patients in hospital. Global  sales   for  the Auckland-based  company of both invasive ventilation and Optiflow consumables in July have returned to similar levels to the peak it saw in April.

No  wonder  this   is   the  top capitalised   company  listed  on   the  NZX, valued at  over  $20bn.

In a  very  different  field,  but  like  the  F&P Healthcare report barely getting a mention  in the mainstream  media,  was   the  announcement   that  reserves  in  the  Kupe  gas and oil field  offshore  in  Taranaki  are  significantly   greater  than previously  reported.  This  means the  field’s  life  is  likely  to be  extended beyond  the 15-20  years  expected  when  it first  came on  stream   in  2009. Continue reading “Great news from Kupe (if drilling permits could be acquired) – NZ has bigger gas and oil reserves than previously reported”

Leave the gas where it is – we can always ship in coal (at a price) to keep the lights on

Fabulous,  isn’t it?  We  mean it’s the stuff of  fables, rather than  “fab”  in the  modern idiom.

The  country might have to  import coal  to keep  the lights  on.  And  yet the government says we can  do  without  the cleaner-burning  gas  which may lie  undiscovered  off the  NZ  coast.

Latest  news on the electricity front  is that – because   of  declining hydro storage, the drier outlook and the shutdown of production from the  Pohokura gas  field – NZ  will have to bring coal in from abroad as fuel for the Huntly power station.

Genesis  Energy says  it is  “close to pushing the button on some coal  imports”  because it needs to  maintain stocks at  Huntly  so it  can keep the  lights on. Continue reading “Leave the gas where it is – we can always ship in coal (at a price) to keep the lights on”

The political power game: energy company resignations suggest the trough has been tipped

Earlier  this  month Jenny  Shipley  announced   she would step down as  chair of Genesis  Energy  at  the  annual meeting  in  October after nine years  in the role. Her decision  followed   a week  after  Transpower’s    chair, Tony  Ryall, said he had notified the company’s shareholding ministers  he will retire from the board of Transpower effective December 31.

Only  people   prone  to  conspiracy   theories    would  see anything other than a coincidence in the timing  of  these  two  announcements.

Yet those familiar  with political events   over  the   past two  decades –  or three – may recall  both Shipley  and   Ryall    share a  bit  of  history  with   none other than  Winston  Peters, who happens to be something more than Deputy PM  in the Labour-NZ  First  government and Minister of Foreign Affairs.  He also  holds  the   State-owned Enterprises  portfolio. Continue reading “The political power game: energy company resignations suggest the trough has been tipped”