Duke Energy, Piedmont Natural Gas to build major natural gas pipeline
Duke Energy and Piedmont Natural Gas this week are soliciting proposals to build and operate a second major wholesale natural gas pipeline into North Carolina to meet growing demand for the fuel in the Carolinas and possibly surrounding states.
Duke Energy's increasing reliance on natural gas to generate electricity, coupled with Piedmont's growing customer demand, warrant investment in a new pipeline that would bolster reliability and diversity of natural gas supplies, the two companies state in their solicitation.
Specifically, the two companies seek an initial natural gas pipeline capacity of as much as 900 million cubic feet per day, with a target in-service date of late 2018. The companies expect to select a proposal by late 2014. Currently, North Carolina is served primarily by a single major wholesale interstate natural gas pipeline that runs through the state.
In addition, the construction of numerous natural gas-fired power plants nationwide in the wake of coal-fired power plant closures – due to environmental regulations and low natural gas prices – has significantly increased demand for natural gas.
Duke Energy has opened five new, cleaner-burning natural gas-fired power plants in North Carolina since 2011 to replace older, less efficient coal-fired power plants. Piedmont pipelines supply natural gas to all five plants.
Duke Energy also has proposed a new natural gas-fired power plant in South Carolina.
A new pipeline would expand Duke Energy's and Piedmont's "access to competitive, secure, diverse and abundant supplies," and "enhance the reliability of future natural gas deliveries into the state," the solicitation says.
This past winter's extremely cold temperatures resulted in high natural gas demand throughout much of the nation, underscoring the need for additional natural gas pipeline capacity, utility industry observers have noted.
Duke Energy since 2005 has reduced company-wide carbon dioxide emissions by 20 percent, sulfur dioxide emissions by 84 percent and nitrogen oxide emissions by 63 percent by building natural gas-fired power plants, closing coal-fired power plants and installing additional emission control equipment.
Hydrostor receives $4m funding for A-CAES facility in Canada
Hydrostor has received $4m funding to develop a 300-500MW Advanced Compressed Air Energy Storage (A-CAES) facility in Canada.
The funding will be used to complete essential engineering and planning, and enable Hydrostor to plan construction.
The project will be modeled on Hydrostor’s commercially operating Goderich storage facility, providing up to 12 hours of energy storage.
Hydrostor’s A-CAES system supports Canada’s green economic transition by designing, building, and operating emissions-free energy storage facilities, and employing people, suppliers, and technologies from the oil and gas sector.
The Honorable Seamus O’Regan, Jr. Minister of Natural Resources, said: “Investing in clean technology will lower emissions and increase our competitiveness. This is how we get to net zero by 2050.”
A-CAES has the potential to lower greenhouse gas emissions by enabling the transition to a cleaner and more flexible electricity grid. Specifically, the low-impact and cost-effective technology will reduce the use of fossil fuels and will provide reliable and bankable energy storage solutions for utilities and regulators, while integrating renewable energy for sustainable growth.
Curtis VanWalleghem, Hydrostor’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “We are grateful for the federal government’s support of our long duration energy storage solution that is critical to enabling the clean energy transition. This made-in-Canada solution, with the support of NRCan and Sustainable Development Technology Canada, is ready to be widely deployed within Canada and globally to lower electricity rates and decarbonize the electricity sector."
The Rosamond A-CAES 500MW Project is under advanced development and targeting a 2024 launch. It is designed to turn California’s growing solar and wind resources into on-demand peak capacity while allowing for closure of fossil fuel generating stations.
Hydrostor closed US$37 million (C$49 million) in growth financing in September 2019.