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INDUSTRY REVIEWNON-RENEWABLE POWER GENERATION


Last year, Wärtsilä handed over two 50 MW capacity gas-fired power plants to UK energy and services company Centrica.


Natural gas appears to have the most potential as the power source of choice over the next few years.


Shanghai-headquartered project forwarder Global Star Logistics. Expanding on the role of nuclear, Ge


believes that these power plants are set to form a very important part of China’s energy mix for decades to come. “China has a gap between its total power requirement and its energy resources; the government believes nuclear energy is a reliable long-term option,” he explained. With regard to the global picture,


however, ALE’s Martinez suggested that, right now, natural gas appears to have the most potential as the power source of choice over the next few years. “In some ways, that is not so much down to gas being an excellent fuel for power generation but more because of the downsides and issues associated with other non-renewable resources,” he added.


“With the exception of marine engines, oil


is now largely out of favour. Very few countries, apart from the USA and some in Asia such as India and China, are building new coal plants because of the emissions to air issue. Nuclear, meanwhile, is a very political and unpredictable sector. So you are left with gas.”


Alternative views It is worth noting that some other logistics providers interviewed by HLPFI were more positive about the prospects for further new power plants fuelled by oil and coal. TGP’s Roehl, for example, commented


that “while it is true that the demand for new coal power plants has been relatively small over the past few years”, the company is currently heavily involved in deliveries for various oil-fired plants in countries such as


– Javier Martinez, ALE


Azerbaijan and Algeria. He added that TGP is still seeing a growing demand for such projects in different parts of the world. The other specific advantage of gas-fired


power plants, according to Martinez, is their flexibility when it comes to the levels of power they provide to regional and national grids. It is fairly simple to quickly increase and


decrease the output of gas-fired plants, he explained. Martinez also pointed out that while a lot


of new gas-fired power generation plants were built around the world in the mid-1990s and early 2000s, to the point where there was some surplus capacity, very few have been added in recent years. “In a number of countries there is now a growing


Maintenance buoys non-renewable market


The need to maintain, rebuild or upgrade existing power plants to ensure they remain cost-effective and environmentally acceptable is generating significant logistics work for some heavy lift service providers and project forwarders worldwide. In the Philippines, for example, Elmer Sarmiento,


president and ceo of Royal Cargo, confirmed that established plants fuelled by non-renewable resources often need heavy lift service provision to support maintenance operations. “That maintenance work can include the


replacement or recalibration of old equipment, such as generators, transformers and ship unloaders, among others, which if they were to break down could cause an emergency shutdown of the plant,


42 May/June 2019


resulting in huge costs for the operator,” he explained. “The heavy lift work required to support such


maintenance activities can involve not just the use of heavy lift equipment but also precision handling, logistics coordination and meeting a strict timeline of delivery. We have provided those sort of services to the majority of power plants in the Philippines.” More generally, Bahadir Erdil, global projects


director – USA, and managing director – Turkey, for Logistics Plus, suggested that power plant modernisation in some parts of the world has been boosted further by the privatisation of some previously state-owned facilities. “Over the last decade, especially in the Middle


East, Eastern Europe and North Africa, ownership of some state-owned power plants has been transferred to private investors. That change can result in new investment to finance modernisation, refurbishment or rehabilitation of those plants,” he commented. At Trans Global Projects Group (TGP), the


company’s business in the non-renewable energy sector continues to centre on providing project logistics services for newbuild plants. However, Joerg Roehl, ceo Europe for Trans Global Projects Group (TGP), explained that the group has recently been involved in some modernisation and refurbishment projects. “We see this as a growing market in the near


future,” he added. www.heavyliftpfi.com


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