UK grid volatility as renewable gain share?

This data-file contains the output from some enormous data-pulls, evaluating UK grid power generation by source, its volatility, and the relationship to hourly traded power prices. We conclude the grid is growing more expensive and volatile.

Different tabs in the data-file cover the total monthly demand of the UK power grid since 2016, broken down by generation source, month-by-month and smoothed over trailing twelve-month timeframes; statistical analysis of hourly power prices, by day and by quarter; and an hourly cross-correlation of wind generation with power prices (chart below).

We have recently updated the data-file to capture the extreme price spikes and volatility seen in 3Q2021.

The data-file is also regularly updated and we are happy to run bespoke analysis on the underlying data-sets for TSE clients.

Fully subsea offshore projects: the economics?

This model presents the economic impacts of developing a typical, 625Mboe offshore  gas condensate field using a fully subsea solution, compared against installing a new production facility.

Both projects are modelled out fully, to illstrate production profiles, per-barrel economics, capex metrics, NPVs, IRRs and sensitivity to oil and gas prices (e.g. breakevens).

The result of a fully offshore project is lower capex, lower opex, faster development and higher uptime, generating a c4% uplift in IRRs, a 50% uplift in NPV6 (below) and a 33% reduction in the project’s gas-breakeven price.

Please download the model to interrogate the numbers and input assumptions.

Offshore wind costs are inflating?

This data-file tabulates the capex costs of 35 offshore wind projects in the UK, with 8.5GW of capacity, which have been installed since the year 2000.

We model the incentive price for each project, i.e., the power price that is needed to earn a 10% levered but unsubsizided. There is little evidence for deflation. Rather, breakevens appear to have risen at a 2.5% CAGR over the past decade.

Please download the data-file to interrogate the findings, or view the individual project parameters. Continued technical innovation is needed in the wind industry. We find new airship concepts could help deflate logistic costs.

Will renewable growth slow down from 2020?

The growth of renewables has been revolutionary, with wind and solar costs emerging towards the bottom of the global cost curve, scaling up at a pace of 300TWH pa. However, we find unsettling evidence that the market could slow down in the 2020s, as curtailment accelerates in heartland markets such as California, Germany and the UK. The rationale, and all the underlying data, are included in this Excel file.

Power from Shore: the economics?

We model the economics of powering an oil platform from shore, using cheap renewable power instead of traditional gas turbines. This can lower upstream CO2 emissions by 5-15kg/bbl, or on average, around 70%; for a base case cost of $50-100/ton.

Our numbers are derived from reviewing technical papers, plus ten prior projects (mostly in Norway), which are tabulated in the data-file, including capex figures (in $M and $/W) where disclosed.

The costs of CO2 abatement can be flexed by varying inputs to the model, such as project size, gas prices, power prices and carbon prices.


Copyright: Thunder Said Energy, 2022.