Oct 23, 2020

North and South American power industry tenders jump in Q3

Utilities
Power
US
Scott Birch
4 min
US power industry tenders up by 63% while South and Central America see 190% increase
US power industry tenders up by 63% while South and Central America see 190% increase...

The North American power industry saw its tender activity in Q3 2020 markedly increase with 726 tenders announced – a rise of 63 percent over the last four quarter average of 445, according to GlobalData’s power database.

A report released by the data and analytics firm shows that the US leads activity in the North American power industry in Q3, with 623 tenders and a share of 85.8 percent of the market, up by 1.8 percent over the previous quarter, and up by 75 percent when compared with the last four-quarter average. 

Canada came in second, with 103 tenders and a market share of 14.2 percent, it adds.

When looking at the last four-quarter average, the US holds top spot with 357 tenders, followed by Canada with 86, and Mexico with just a single tender.

Looking at the tenders divided by type of technology, thermal accounted for the largest proportion of tenders with 306, and an 82.7 percent share, followed by solar with 51 tenders and a 13.8 percent share. Wind had seven tenders, and a 1.9 percent share.

The report adds that when the power industry tenders are divided by segment, as tracked by GlobalData, T&D Equipment was the most popular segment in North America power tenders activity during Q3 2020, with 318 tenders. It is followed by Generation Equipment (307) and Power Plant (44).

The proportion of tenders by category tracked by GlobalData in the quarter was as follows:

  • Supply & Erection: 516 tenders and a 71.1 percent share
  • Repair, Maintenance, Upgrade & Others: 139 tenders and a 19.1 percent share
  • Project Implementation: 53 tenders and a 7.3 percent share
  • Power Purchase Agreement: eight tenders and a 1.1 percent share
  • Consulting & Similar Services: eight tenders and a 1.1 percent share
  • Electricity Supply: two tenders and a 0.3 percent share.

The report also lists the top issuers by capacity for power tenders in Q3 2020:

The top issuers of tenders for the quarter in terms of power capacity involved in North America were:

  • PacifiCorp (United States): 4,300MW from one tender
  • New York State Energy Research & Development Authority (United States): 4,000MW from one tender
  • New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (United States): 2,400MW capacity from one tender.

Meanwhile, in South and Central America, power industry tenders activity during the same time period saw 87 tenders announced – a 190 percent rise over the last four-quarter average of 30, GlobalData says.

Looking at tenders by activity, Bolivia leads activity in Q3 with 41 tenders and a share of 47.1 percent, up 18.9 percent over the previous quarter and up 720 percent when compared with the last four-quarter average. Trinidad and Tobago followed with 14 tenders and a share of 16.1 percent. Uruguay, with seven tenders and an 8 percent market share during the quarter, rounded out the top three slots.

For the last four-quarter average, Bolivia held the top spot with five tenders, followed by Brazil with five and Uruguay with five tenders.

In contrast to North America, solar accounts for the largest proportion of tenders with 11 and a 47.8 percent share, followed by thermal with five tenders and a 21.7 percent share. Wind accounts for four tenders and a 17.4 percent share.

Looking at power industry tenders divided by segment as tracked by GlobalData, T&D Equipment was the most popular segment in South and Central America power tenders activity during Q3 2020, with 39 tenders, followed by T&D Project (28) and Power Plant (9).

The proportion of tenders by category tracked by GlobalData in the quarter was as follows:

  • Supply & Erection: 44 tenders and a 50.6% share
  • Project Implementation: 28 tenders and a 32.2% share
  • Repair, Maintenance, Upgrade & Others: seven tenders and an 8% share
  • Power Purchase Agreement: five tenders and a 5.7% share
  • Consulting & Similar Services: three tenders and a 3.4% share.

The top issuers of tenders for the quarter in terms of power capacity involved in South and Central America were:

  • Government of Jamaica (Jamaica): 500MW from one tender
  • Government of Haiti (Haiti): 190MW from one tender
  • Minister of Energy and Non-Renewable Natural Resources: 60MW capacity from one tender

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Jul 26, 2021

Ofwat allows retailers to raise prices from April

Ofwat
Utilities
water
prices
Dominic Ellis
3 min
Ofwat confirms levels of bad debt costs across the business retail market are exceeding 2% of non-household revenue

Retailers can recover a portion of excess bad debt by temporarily increasing prices from April 2022, according to an Ofwat statement.

The regulator confirmed its view that levels of bad debt costs across the business retail market are exceeding 2% of non-household revenue, thereby allowing "a temporary increase" in the maximum prices. Adjustments to price caps will apply for a minimum of two years to reduce the step changes in price that customers might experience.

Measures introduced since March 2020 to contain the spread of Covid-19 could lead to retailers facing higher levels of customer bad debt. Retailers’ abilities to respond to this are expected to be constrained by Ofwat strengthening protections for non-household customers during Covid-19 and the presence of price caps.  

In April last year, Ofwat committed to provide additional regulatory protection if bad debt costs across the market exceeded 2% of non-household revenue. 

Georgina Mills, Business Retail Market Director at Ofwat said: “These decisions aim to protect the interests of non-household customers in the short and longer term, including from the risk of systemic Retailer failure as the business retail market continues to feel the impacts of COVID-19. By implementing market-wide adjustments to price caps, we aim to minimise any additional costs for customers in the shorter term by promoting efficiency and supporting competition.”  

There are also three areas where Ofwat has not reached definitive conclusions and is seeking further evidence and views from stakeholders:   

  1. Pooling excess bad debt costs – Ofwat proposes that the recovery of excess bad debt costs is pooled across all non-household customers, via a uniform uplift to price caps. 
  2. Keeping open the option of not pursuing a true up – For example if outturn bad debt costs are not materially higher than the 2% threshold. 
  3. Undertaking the true up – If a 'true up' is required, Ofwat has set out how it expects this to work in practice. 

Further consultation on the proposed adjustments to REC price caps can be expected by December.

Anita Dougall, CEO and Founding Partner at Sagacity, said Ofwat’s decision comes hot on the heels of Ofgem’s price cap rise in April.

"While it’s great that regulators are helping the industry deal with bad debt in the wake of the pandemic, raising prices only treats the symptoms. Instead, water companies should head upstream, using customer data to identify and rectify the causes of bad debt, stop it at source and help prevent it from occurring in the first place," she said.

"While recouping costs is a must, water companies shouldn’t just rely on the regulator. Data can help companies segment customers, identify and assist customers that are struggling financially, avoiding penalising the entire customer in tackling the cause of the issue."

United Utilities picks up pipeline award

A race-against-time plumbing job to connect four huge water pipes into the large Haweswater Aqueduct in Cumbria saw United Utilities awarded Utility Project of the Year by Pipeline Industries Guild.

The Hallbank project, near Kendal, was completed within a tight eight-day deadline, in a storm and during the second COVID lockdown last November – and with three hours to spare. Principal construction manager John Dawson said the project helped boost the resilience of water supplies across the North West.

“I think what made us stand out was the scale, the use of future technology and the fact that we were really just one team, working collaboratively for a common goal," he said.

Camus Energy secures $16m funding

Camus Energy, which provides advanced grid management technology, has secured $16 million in a Series A round, led by Park West Asset Management and joined by Congruent VenturesWave Capital and other investors, including an investor-owned utility. Camus will leverage the operating capital to expand its grid management software platform to meet growing demand from utilities across North America.

As local utilities look to save money and increase their use of clean energy by tapping into low-cost and low-carbon local resources, Camus' grid management platform provides connectivity between the utility's operations team, its grid-connected equipment and customer devices.

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