Power, Coal and Electricity

Jun 22 - Resurgent coal exporters should be wary of blinkered optimism: Russell 

Coal miners supplying Asia's rapidly growing economies have plenty to be optimistic about as prices and demand appear robust, but they should be wary of getting caught up in the positive feedback loop that nearly destroyed them before. This week's inaugural Energy Mines and Money conference in Brisbane, the heartland of the industry in top coal exporter Australia, was a sea of optimism about the outlook for the industry. Click here to read full stories.

Jun 22 - Tesla to close a dozen solar facilities in nine states - documents

Electric car maker Tesla Inc's move last week to cut 9 percent of its workforce will sharply downsize the residential solar business it bought two years ago in a controversial $2.6 billion deal, according to three internal company documents and seven current and former Tesla solar employees. The latest cuts to the division that was once SolarCity - a sales and installation company founded by two cousins of Tesla CEO Elon Musk - include closing about a dozen installation facilities, according to internal company documents, and ending a retail partnership with Home Depot Inc that the current and former employees said generated about half of its sales. Click here to read full stories.

Jun 20 - EDF says strike hits hydro plants, data shows output unaffected

France's EDF said workers had gone on strike on Tuesday at the utility's hydroelectric plants and that a fall in power output was possible, although latest data from the grid operator showed no dip for the moment. Earlier, EDF said it had received notice from employees of their plans to launch a 10-day strike, the latest in a series of walkouts to hit the transport and energy sectors of the euro zone's second biggest economy. Click here to read full stories.

Jun 15 - Japan's SoftBank to invest up to $100 bln in Indian solar - NHK 

SoftBank Group Corp has decided to invest $60 billion-$100 billion in solar power generation in India, Japanese public broadcaster NHK reported on Friday. SoftBank and the Indian government are expected to reach a formal agreement soon after final arrangements are made, the report said without naming its sources. Click here to read full stories.

Jun 13 - Asian coal and gas markets roar into top gear as region revs up demand 

Thermal coal and gas prices have coursed into a bull run, propelled by particularly strong demand across Asia, where electricity consumption is surging thanks to healthy economic growth just as seasonal needs rise with the start of summer. Spot thermal coal cargo prices for export from Australia's Newcastle terminal last settled at $117 per tonne, the highest level since February 2012. That is up by more than 130 percent from 2016's record lows.  Click here to read full stories.

Jun 12 - Trump's coal, nuclear bailout no shield from hackers - cyber experts 

Bailing out nuclear and coal-fired power plants will not toughen the U.S. power grid against cyber attacks as the Trump administration claims, according to cyber experts, because hackers have a wide array of options for hitting electric infrastructure and nuclear facilities that are high-profile targets. U.S. President Donald Trump this month directed Energy Secretary Rick Perry to take emergency steps to stem a surge in coal and nuclear plant retirements in recent years, arguing that more shutdowns would leave the country less able to bounce back from disruptions caused by storms, physical attacks, and hackers. Click here to read full stories.

Jun 08 - Australian coal prices hit 6-year high as Asia demand spikes

Australian thermal coal prices have risen to their highest level since 2012 as hot weather across North Asia spurs buying ahead of the peak summer demand season. Spot prices for thermal coal cargoes for export from Australia's Newcastle terminal last closed at $115.25 per tonne, the highest level since February 2012. Click here to read full stories.

Jun 05 - U.S. black lung fund will need taxpayer bailout if coal tax falls - GAO

A federal fund to help U.S. coal miners disabled by black lung disease will require a multibillion-dollar taxpayer bailout if Congress does not extend or increase the tax on coal production that funds it, according to a government report on Monday. Coal companies are currently required to pay a $1.10 per ton tax on underground coal production to finance the federal Black Lung Disability Trust Fund, which pays medical and living expenses for eligible miners, but that amount is scheduled to revert to the 1977 level of 50 cents. Click here to read full stories.

Jun 04 - US coal lobby fights black-lung tax as disease rates surge

As a young man, Barry Shrewsbury dug coal in the West Virginia mines and spent his time off hunting and fishing in the rolling hills. Now, at 62, he struggles to breathe and accomplish basic tasks such as shopping and showering, and relies on a federal fund for ex-miners with black lung disease to pay for an oxygen tank and doctor visits. Click here to read full stories.

Jun 01 - New Zealand push on clean power comes with high political, economic risks 

New Zealand has set out to burnish its clean, green image by becoming Asia Pacific's first developed economy to stop using fossil fuels to generate power, although the pitfalls encountered by a Maori iwi, or tribe, may signal trouble ahead. The 3,000-member Ngaati Kea Ngaati Tuara iwi in Rotorua, when switching to renewables, found local geothermal sources were not hot enough to generate electricity. Click here to read full stories.

May 31 - South Korea's sulphur cap alters Asian coal market dynamics: Russell 

South Korea's imposition of a strict sulphur cap on its imported coal is likely to cause ripples across Asia's markets for the polluting fuel, both in the short and longer terms.From July, South Korean utilities will be restricted to burning coal with an average sulphur content of 0.4 percent over the course of the year, part of government measures to combat air pollution. Click here to read full stories.

May 30 - BHP-Mitsubishi JV to sell Australia coal mine to Japan's Sojitz

Global miner BHP Billiton said on Wednesday that its joint venture with a unit of Mitsubishi Corp would sell a coal mine in Queensland in Australia to Japan's Sojitz Corp for A$100 million ($74.89 million). The Gregory Crinum hard coking coal mine had ceased production by the end of 2015. BHP said its annual capacity was 6 million tonnes prior to that. Click here to read full stories.

May 17 - N.Korean traders offering cheap coal on hopes sanctions will ease - Chinese traders 

Some North Korean traders are offering cheap coal to Chinese buyers who are stockpiling it at ports inside the isolated country, hoping recent diplomatic moves lead to an easing of sanctions barring purchases of North Korean coal, three Chinese traders told Reuters. Official data shows China has not imported any coal from North Korea since October last year, after the United Nations banned Pyongyang from exporting coal in September. Click here to read full stories.

May 15 - China's April coal output rebounds from 5-month low in March 

China produced 293 million tonnes of coal in April, up 4.1 percent from the same month a year earlier, data from the National Statistics Bureau showed on Tuesday, as miners ramped up domestic supplies after China tightened import curbs. April's production was also an increase from 290 million tonnes in March, which was the weakest level since October. Click here to read full stories.

May 09 - Coal mine explosion in south-central China kills two workers, three missing

An explosion on Wednesday at a small coal mine in China's Hunan province that killed two workers while another three are missing, the Hunan coal mine safety regulation bureau said. The incident occurred at Hunan Baodian Qunli Coal Mining Co, which produces 120,000 tonnes of coal annually. Click here to read full stories.

May 08 - Japan's Mitsubishi Corp says annual profit hits record on higher coal prices

Japanese trading house Mitsubishi Corp on Tuesday reported a 27-percentincrease in profit to a record for the last financial year due to stronger coking coal prices, and forecast a 7-percent rise for this year. The company's net income for the year through March 31 came to 560.17 billion yen ($5.1 billion), compared with its own estimate of 540 billion yen and a mean estimate of 546.54 billion yen among nine analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. Click here to read full stories.

May 07 - Two miners dead, three missing after quake at Polish coal mine

Rescue teams have confirmed the death of a second Polish coal miner and are searching for three more trapped nearly a kilometre underground after a quake, the chief executive of the mine owner said. The quake hit the Borynia-Zofiowka-Jastrzebie coal mine in southern Poland on Saturday morning, initially trapping seven miners at a depth of about 900 metres (2,950 feet).  Click here to read full stories.

May 03 - Two U.S. coal miners see growth amid sector's gloom

U.S. electric utilities are expected to shut hundreds more of their coal-fired power generators in the coming years, extending a long trend away from coal and toward natural gas that has cast a pall over the mining industry. But not every U.S. coal company sees a bleak future. Click here to read full stories.

Apr 24 - Utility CenterPoint Energy to buy Vectren in $6 bln deal 

U.S. gas and electric utility CenterPoint Energy said on Monday it would buy rival Vectren Corp  for about $6 billion, the latest in a string of mergers in the sector as power consumption in many parts of the country flattens. The deal adds about 1.45 million customers across Indiana and Ohio. CenterPoint already serves customers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Texas. Click here to read full stories.

Apr 18 - China move to restrict coal imports may drive price divergence: Russell 

The price of seaborne thermal coal in Asia may come under pressure as China moves to impose some import restrictions on imports of the polluting fuel. Several ports in southern and eastern China have introduced controls on coal imports, ranging from bans on unloadings to tightening customs clearances. Click here to read full stories.

Apr 12 - China utilities plan new coal import price index to curb volatility 

China's major utilities are preparing to launch their own coal price index for imports, an official at China Huaneng Group said, in a move the power firms hope will give them more control over how much they pay for their key raw material. Huaneng is working on the plan with China Datang Corp, Guangdong Yuedean Group and Zhejiang Energy, said Xu Zanfei, director of planning for Huaneng's fuel department, in a presentation at the 16th Coaltrans China conference. Click here to read full stories.

Apr 05 - BHP says to quit global coal lobby group, stick with U.S. Chamber of Commerce 

Global miner BHP Billiton said on Thursday it had made a final decision to leave the World Coal Association (WCA) over differences on climate change but would remain a member of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. BHP has largely quit mining coal for power plants, but is the world's largest exporter of coal for steel-making. It said in December it had taken a preliminary decision to withdraw from the WCA, pending a full review. Click here to read full stories.

Apr 04 - Indonesia to postpone new coal shipping rules to 2020 

Indonesia will delay until 2020 trade rules requiring exporters of coal and crude palm oil to use only Indonesian-flagged vessels, government officials said, putting off efforts to develop local shipping and save foreign exchange reserves. The decision to postpone the rules by two years may come as a relief to the coal, palm oil and shipping industries, which had raised concerns over the availability of local vessels. Indonesia is the world's biggest exporter of thermal coal and the top producer of palm oil. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 30 - Many Cash Prices Unavailable due to Easter holidays (Commodity3)
There will be very little to NO cash prices today March 30 through April 2 due to the Easter bank holidays.

Mar 26 - China's coal imports from Australia fall in Feb vs Jan

Australia held firm as China's top coal supplier in February, customs data showed on Monday, despite a fall in shipments from the previous month due to weaker industrial demand during a week-long national holiday. Arrivals of Australian coal fell to 5.74 million tonnes last month from 7.94 million tonnes in January, data from the General Administration of Customs showed. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 23 - Rio Tinto to sell Queensland coal asset to Whitehaven for $200 mln

Rio Tinto is to sell its 75 percent stake in a Queensland project to Australia's Whitehaven Coal for $200 million, in its second deal this week to shed coal assets. Rio is also in the process of selling its remaining Australian coal asset - a stake in the Kestrel underground mine. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 23 - Arab world's first nuclear reactor delayed again over training -sources 

The opening of the United Arab Emirates' first nuclear reactor, due to open last year, has been pushed back to 2019 due to training delays, two sources told Reuters. The $24.4 billion Barakah power plant is the world's largest nuclear project under construction and will be the first in the Arab world. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 23 - E.ON, RWE have no merger plans - CEOs in German paper 

RWE and E.ON are not planning to merge to create an energy giant after they shook up the German market with an asset swap, the chief executives of the two companies said in a newspaper interview published on Friday. RWE and E.ON unveiled plans last week to break up and share renewables, networks and retail group Innogy, the largest restructuring in the country's energy market since Germany decided to phase out nuclear power. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 23 - US miners' union to endorse two more Democrats in coal country 

The main U.S. coal miners' union is set to endorse two Democrats running for Congress in West Virginia, two sources familiar with the matter said on Thursday - a boost for Democrats trying to win over a constituency that voted heavily for Republican Donald Trump in 2016. The United Mine Workers of America on Friday will endorse Richard Ojeda for U.S. Representative in the state's third district, as well as incumbent Senator Joe Manchin, a Democrat and former West Virginia governor, the sources said. They asked not to be named as they were discussing a confidential matter. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 21 - Glencore snaps up Rio Tinto's Hail Creek coal mine, project for $1.7 bln 

Glencore is buying Rio Tinto's Hail Creek coal mine and the Valeria coal project in Australia for $1.7 billion, tightening the Swiss trading and mining giant's grip on coal as its rivals exit the industry. The acquisition, announced by both companies on Tuesday, follows Glencore's purchase of half of Rio Tinto's Hunter Valley coal operations, also in Australia, for $1.1 billion last year in a deal with China's Yancoal Australia Ltd. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 19 - Investors give E.ON edge after big German power deal 

German utility E.ON is emerging as an investor favourite following a major asset swap deal with rival RWE this week, with its eye-popping share of regulated profits outshining RWE's riskier bet on renewables. Following the deal, announced on Sunday, shares in both companies soared, as did those in RWE's networks and renewables business Innogy, which will be broken up as part of the deal and whose assets will split among E.ON and RWE. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 16 - Zimbabwe's coal output set to quadruple as investors arrive 

Zimbabwe has attracted around $300 million in its coal industry that will quadruple production next year versus 2017, its mining minister told an investment conference in London on Thursday. The country, which says its abundant mineral resources include more than 40 exploitable minerals, is seeking to lure foreign investment to reboot its economy after a coup that pushed out veteran leader Robert Mugabe last year. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 14 - E.ON, RWE get fresh boost from dividend, profit outlook

German energy groups E.ON and RWE on Tuesday fleshed out their plans to break up RWE's Innogy business, predicting higher profits and dividends as a result of a more focused corporate structure. E.ON forecast annual operating profit to rise by an average 3 to 4 percent over the next three years, while RWE flagged a bigger than expected dividend for 2019, driving shares in E.ON to the top of Germany's blue-chip index. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 12 - RWE, E.ON reshape German power sector in Innogy asset swap deal

Germany's top utilities on Sunday announced plans to break up Innogy, whose assets will be divided among parent RWE  and rival E.ON  in the sector's biggest overhaul since a landmark move to exit nuclear power. The deal, which includes E.ON making a 5.2 billion euro ($6.4 billion) takeover offer to Innogy's minority shareholders, spells the end of the network, renewables and retail energy group, carved out from RWE two years ago, as a standalone unit. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 26 - China's Jan coal imports from Australia surge as blizzard hits 

China's coal imports from key supplier Australia surged in January from a year ago, customs data showed on Saturday, boosted by strong demand at utilities amid freezing weather. The world's top coal consumer brought in 7.94 million tonnes of coal from Australia last month, data from the General Administration of Customs showed, up 9.4 percent from a year ago. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 26 - For coal miners, it's time to exit or get rich: Russell 

It seems coal miners are adopting one of two disparate strategies, either exit the business in a highly visible way to buff up your climate credentials, or sit tight, keep as quiet as possible and rake in the cash.An example of the public exit from the business is South32, the Perth-based miner spun out of BHP Billiton which is in the process of selling out of its thermal coal assets in South Africa. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 21 - Off-grid power pioneers pour into West Africa

Standing by a towering equatorial forest, Jean-Noel Kouame's new breeze-block house may be beyond the reach of Ivory Coast's power grid, but it's perfectly located for solar power entrepreneurs. Buoyed by success in East Africa, off-grid solar power startups are pouring into West Africa, offering pay-as-you-go kits in a race to claim tens of millions of customers who lack reliable access to electricity. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 20 - China, not Trump, drives U.S. coal export revival: Russell

If China does seek a way to retaliate against U.S. proposals to impose import curbs on steel and aluminium, then targeting President Donald Trump's favoured coal would be tempting. One of Trump's key campaign promises in the 2016 election victory was to end the war on what he termed "beautiful, clean" coal. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 12 - Rail fight threatens coal giants' Australian exports

Australia's top coal hauler, Aurizon Holdings Ltd, is on course for a showdown with the world's biggest coal exporters after a regulator capped the revenue it can charge at A$1 billion ($783 million) less than the company sought. BHP Billiton, Glencore, Anglo American, Peabody Energy and others face cuts of nearly a tenth of their coal export volumes from Queensland state, the country's biggest coal exporter, after Aurizon said the tough revenue cap would cut throughput on its network. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 08 - China's Jan coal imports hit highest in 4 yrs on blizzards, cold

China's coal imports hit their highest in four years in January, customs data showed on Thursday, driven up as snowstorms across the country boosted demand from utilities and snarled domestic transport networks. The world's No.2 economy brought in 27.81 million tonnes of coal last month, up 11.5 percent from 24.91 million the year before, the General Administration of Customs said. That compared with 22.74 million tonnes in December. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 07 - South32's S.African coal assets to become separate business within 6 months

South32's South African coal assets will be set up as its own business within six months, its president and chief operating officer Mike Fraser said. Fraser said that South32, which was spun out from BHP Billiton  in 2015, had received a number of offers for the assets which it up for sale in November last year as part of a shift away from coal. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 05 - Perfect storm: China's blizzard exposes flaws in rail, coal policies 

China's worst blizzard this winter exposed a flaw in Beijing's drive to create remote coal mining hubs as it tries to streamline heavy industries and clear the air in populated regions: a lack of railroads to get the fuel to market.Heavy snow storms snarled the world's largest rail network this week, closing highways, freezing ports and cutting off critical supplies of thermal coal.  Click here to read full stories.

Feb 05 - South African coal loses Europe, but gains South Asia: Russell

A decade ago South Africa sent the bulk of its coal exports to Europe, a market now disappearing right before its eyes.But far from being worried, South Africa's coal exporters are confident that they can increase shipments in coming years by becoming the supplier of choice to new markets in Asia, particularly Pakistan and India. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 02 - In the shadow of oil, coal markets rise from the ashes 

Far from entering the death throes predicted by some environmentalists and analysts, thermal coal miners are enjoying their best returns in years as strong Asian demand and tight supplies send prices soaring. Chinese thermal coal futures hit a record of 687 yuan ($108.49) this week, up five-fold from their 2016 lows. Coal cargo prices from Australia's Newcastle terminal, meanwhile, have roughly doubled since 2016 lows to over $100 per tonne, not far off 2011/2012 levels.  Click here to read full stories.

Jan 30 - Coal firms plead to courts, Trump for West Coast export terminals 

The ailing U.S. coal industry is ramping up its political and legal offensive to win approval for West Coast export terminals that could provide a lifeline to lucrative Asia markets. Coal producers filed two recent lawsuits against governments in Washington state and California challenging local decisions to block port projects on environmental grounds. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 30 - Union at Colombia's Cerrejon votes to strike, mine seeks deal

The largest union at Colombia's top thermal coal mine Cerrejon has voted to strike following failed salary and benefit negotiations with the company, the union said on Monday. Cerrejon accounts for 37 percent of Colombia's coal output, the world's fifth-largest exporter of the mineral, and a strike is likely to affect exports. The stoppage could begin within three days, the union said. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 29 - Heat wave leaves thousands of Australian homes without power

More than 10,000 homes in Australia's second most populous state were stuck without power on Monday as a surge in demand amid scorching heat overloaded the grid, in the latest blow to the nation's stretched power sector. The outages on distribution networks, which hit more than 50,000 homes on Sunday, came less than a year after Australia's biggest city, Sydney, was hit by blackouts during a heatwave, and 16 months after a state-wide outage in South Australia. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 29 - China coal futures hit record high as utilities warn of shortages

China's thermal coal futures hit record highs on Monday after four top utilities warned of potential heating and electricity shortages and as the worst blizzards this winter continued to blast some central and southern provinces. Last week, China's State Power Investment Corp (SPIC), China Datang Corp, China Huaneng Group and China Huadian Corp asked the government to boost supplies of coal and temper a months-long rally in prices.  Click here to read full stories.

Jan 26 - Despite sanctions, North Korea exported coal to South and Japan via Russia

North Korea shipped coal to Russia last year which was then delivered to South Korea and Japan in a likely violation of U.N. sanctions, three Western European intelligence sources said. The U.N. Security Council banned North Korean exports of coal last Aug. 5 under sanctions intended to cut off an important source of the foreign currency Pyongyang needs to fund its nuclear weapon and long-range missile programmes. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 25 - Japan 2017 thermal coal imports hit record, LNG up for first year in three 

Japan's thermal coal imports rose to a record last year and liquefied natural gas (LNG) purchases climbed for the first time in three years, as the fuels filled the gap in power generation left by the country's slow restart of its nuclear power plants.The figures underscore Japan's continued reliance on imported fossil fuels for power generation, as it slowly embraces renewable energy, while the majority of the country's nuclear reactors remain shut following the Fukushima disaster nearly seven years ago. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 19 - Heatwave tests Australia's power grid

Sweltering weather across southern Australia sparked power price spikes on Friday and prompted the national grid operator to put emergency generators on standby. Temperatures above 40 degrees Celsius (104°F) represent the first major test of the energy grid this year after nearly 2,000 megawatts of extra capacity were added to prevent blackouts that have previously hit household and industrial users. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 15 - China state coal miners cut prices to kill rally amid heating crisis 

China's top state coal miners have cut spot prices for the fuel to dampen a month-long price rally that was triggered after Beijing reversed a ban on using coal in households and some industrial plants amid the nation's winter heating crisis. Seven firms in China's top coal mining province of Shanxi, including Shanxi Coking Coal Group, Datong Coal Mine Group and Jinneng Group, have issued statements announcing have lowered their coal prices by 15-20 yuan ($3.10) per tonne, according to the China Coal Transport and Distribution Association (CCTD) on Friday. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 11 - Output and exports from Colombia's Cerrejon coal mine fell in 2017

Production and exports at Cerrejon, Colombia's largest thermal coal mine, fell in 2017 for the third straight year as heavy rainfall affected operations, the mine's owners said on Wednesday. Output reached 31.9 million tonnes in 2017, 0.3 percent below the previous year. Exports totaled 31.7 million tonnes, a drop of 2.4 percent compared with 2016, Cerrejon said. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 11 - U.S. energy regulator rejects bid to favour coal and nuclear power: Kemp 

Federal regulators in the United States have declined to act on a proposal from the secretary of energy that would have supported coal-fired and nuclear power plants by mandating special tariffs for essential reliability services. In September, U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry directed the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to consider a rule ensuring full-cost recovery for generators providing reliability services and that store at least 90 days of fuel on site. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 10 - Workers at Colombia's Cerrejon coal mine say they could strike over wages 

Union workers at Colombia's largest coal mine, Cerrejon, could strike if disagreements at negotiations for wages and benefits are not resolved by Jan. 19, the main union's president said on Tuesday. A strike at the Cerrejon mine, which produces 32 million tonnes of coal a year, or about 37 percent of Colombia's total output, could reduce production and overseas sales from the world's fifth-largest exporting nation of the mineral. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 09 - U.S. plan to aid coal, nuclear rejected in setback for Trump 

The U.S. power grid regulator on Monday rejected a directive by Energy Secretary Rick Perry to prop up aging coal and nuclear power plants, in a setback for the Trump administration that disappointed coal miners but pleased drillers, environmentalists and renewable energy advocates. Perry had directed the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in September to consider a plan subsidizing those plants for what he said were their contributions in making the power grid more reliable and resilient. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 08 - Frigid weather sends heating prices soaring as energy usage spikes 

A severe winter storm in the U.S. Northeast brought plunging temperatures on Friday, driving regional natural gas prices to all-time highs, disrupting refinery operations and causing electrical outages. From Baltimore to Caribou, Maine, efforts were under way to clear roadways from Thursday's snowfall. Temperatures were expected to be 20 to 30 degrees Fahrenheit below the average for this time of year and could set records, according to the National Weather Service. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 02 - Swiss court: Czechs can seek return of funds in MUS coal mine privatisation 

The Czech Republic can seek hundreds of millions in funds seized by Swiss authorities from bank accounts linked to the disputed privatisation of one of the nation's coal mines two decades ago, Switzerland's highest court said on Friday. The sale of lignite miner Mostecka Uhelna Spolecnost (MUS) became one of the biggest Czech post-communist privatisation scandals, among a string of murky disposals of state-owned companies. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 02 - Glencore sells Australian coal mine to Gupta's GFG Alliance

Glencore has agreed to sell one of two Australian coal mines it put up for sale last year to British industrialist Sanjeev Gupta's GFG Alliance for an undisclosed sum, the two companies said separately on Tuesday. The acquisition follows Gupta's purchase last year of the financially troubled Wyhalla steel works in southern Australia, part of a plan to build an integrated steel business by buying the unwanted assets of other companies. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 22 - Australia's Wesfarmers to sell Curragh coal mine for $539 mln 

Wesfarmers Ltd said on Friday it would sell its Curragh coal mine in Queensland to Texas-based Coronado Coal Group for A$700 million ($539 million). Coronado Coal is owned by Texas-based private equity group The Energy & Minerals Group. Click here to read full stories. 

Dec 19 - BHP says likely to quit global coal lobby group 

Global miner BHP Billiton said on Tuesday it has taken a preliminary decision to quit the World Coal Association citing disagreement over climate change, and might also withdraw from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce over mining industry rules. BHP, which has largely quit mining coal for power plants but is the world's largest exporter of coal for steel-making, said it would seek responses from the World Coal Association over policy differences before making a final decision on whether to quit in March 2018. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 19 - Coal's bleak future is stagnant demand, volatile trading: Russell

Moribund global demand growth and volatile pricing are what coal producers face in the next five years, with not even some bright spots in Asia able to outweigh a bleak outlook for Europe and the United States, and lower consumption in top user China. That's the central message of the International Energy Agency's Coal 2017 report, which outlines a future in which coal remains a significant source of global energy, but one that is decreasing in importance. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 14 - China's natural gas woes boost coal, but for how long? : Russell

A sure sign that China is struggling with its planned switch to natural gas from coal for winter heating is the spot price of Australian coal climbing back above $100 a tonne. Spot cargoes of thermal coal from Australia's Newcastle port, an Asian benchmark for the fuel used mainly in power plants, rose to $100.65 a tonne on Wednesday, breaching the triple-figure barrier for the first time since Nov. 1 and hitting their highest since mid-September. Click here to read full stories. 

Dec 14 - S.Korea plans shift to renewables, but coal, nuclear to remain strong

South Korea aims to expand the share of renewables and also natural gas in its fuel mix to gradually cut back its high dependence on coal and nuclear power over the 15 years to 2031, the energy ministry said on Thursday. The ministry's new draft proposal - an adjustment to its power supply plan for 2017-2031 - reflects growing domestic calls for better air quality and more stringent nuclear safety. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 13 - Twenty companies join nations planning coal phase out 

About 20 companies including Unilever, EDF and Iberdrola joined an international alliance of 26 nations on Tuesday pledging to phase out coal to combat global warming. At a climate summit hosted by French President Emmanuel Macron in Paris, new members of the "Powering Past Coal Alliance" agreed that traditional coal power should be phased out by 2030 in rich nations and by 2050 in other parts of the world.  Click here to read full stories.

Dec 12 - Cold comfort: Energy prices soar on oil woes, China gas spree and winter coal surge

Global energy prices are surging as cold weather across the northern hemisphere pushes up demand for heating fuels like coal and natural gas, while supply disruptions have pushed up oil. In oil markets, the most traded commodity, Brent crude oil futures shot above $65 per barrel on Tuesday for the first time since June 2015 after the shutdown of the Forties North Sea pipeline knocked out significant supply from a market that was already tightening due to OPEC-led production cuts. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 12 - China coal prices soar as gas shortages spur unexpected demand 

China's thermal coal prices jumped to a record high on Monday as natural gas shortages across the north spurred an unexpected resurgence in demand for the fuel from utilities, tightening supplies in the world's top importer of the commodity. Coal futures jumped to 689.8 yuan ($104.26) per tonne, topping a previous all-time high of 688.8 yuan set a week ago. Spot cargo prices for thermal coal out of Australia's Newcastle port, which acts as an Asian benchmark, have also risen. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 08 - Glencore says signs labour pacts at most of its Australian coal mines 

Global miner Glencore on Friday said it had reached new labour agreements with workers at 13 of its coal mines in Australia, ending months of negotiations over wages and benefits. The agreements are in the process of being finalised and include each of Glencore's Hunter Valley collieries in New South Wales state, representing one of the world's single biggest sources of thermal coal sold into export markets. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 07 - Colombia's coal output down 8.1 percent in third quarter 

Colombia's coal output fell 8.1 percent to 21.5 million tonnes in the third quarter from a year earlier, the national mining agency said on Monday. The Andean nation, the world's fifth-largest coal exporter, produced 23.4 million tonnes in the third quarter of 2016, the ministry said in a statement. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 06 - China coal cities secure $310 mln ADB loan to revitalise economies 

Four cities in northeast China have secured a loan of $310 million from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to revitalise their economies, the bank said on Tuesday, two years after mass layoffs at local coal mines triggered unrest in the region. The cities of Hegang, Jixi, Qitaihe and Shuangyashan - in northeast China's Heilongjiang province - were the major casualties of a 2015 decision by state-owned Longmay Group to slash coal production, close depleted mines and lay off as many as 100,000 local workers, part of nationwide efforts to tackle overcapacity and shore up prices in the sector. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 05 - Australia's South32 sees drop in Illawarra coal production 

Australian miner South32 Ltd said on Tuesday it expects its Illawarra coal project to produce about 4.5 million tonnes of coal for fiscal 2018, down from 7.1 million tonnes a year ago following a recent outage at its Appin colliery. The company suspended operations at the Appin coal mine earlier this year on concerns over high gas levels, but was given a regulatory greenlight in August to resume limited operations. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 04 - China trims appetite for coal imports, but prices hold up: Russell

There are indications that China's appetite for imported coal may be starting to ease in line with Beijing's efforts to limit the use of the fuel over winter in a bid to lower air pollution. China's seaborne imports were 18.26 million tonnes in November, down from 20 million in October, according to vessel-tracking and port data compiled by Thomson Reuters Supply Chain and Commodity Forecasts. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 04 - China's top two banks won't lend to Adani's Australian coal mine 

China's two biggest banks said they do not plan to finance a controversial Australian coal mine, in the latest blow to Indian conglomerate Adani Enterprises' long delayed project. Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), and China Construction Bank said in separate statements they were not working on the project, after media recently reported that Chinese banks may get involved. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 30 - Back to black? Australian industry prepares for possible summer power cuts 

Some of Australia's biggest power users, including mining giant BHP, are taking steps to curb the impact of any repeat of crippling blackouts that hit last summer, worried about a grid that increasingly relies on wind power and old coal-fired plants. Their back-up strategies come despite assurances from the nation's energy market operator that it has lined up enough power reserves - including the world's biggest lithium ion battery, set up by Tesla Inc - to get through all but the most unexpected conditions. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 27 - Adani hopes for govt coal mine loan fade after Australian election 

India's Adani Enterprises Ltd faces a likely block on a A$900 million ($684 million) government loan to help build a giant coal mine in Australia, with the left-leaning Labor Party on track for re-election in a state poll. Queensland state premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, who originally supported Adani's application for the federally funded loan to build a rail coal haulage line, said three weeks ago her government would veto the concessional loan. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 08 - Glencore extends lockout at Australia coal mine as talks stall again

Glencore has extended a lockout of 190 workers at a coal mine in eastern Australia for a further two weeks after the latest attempt to end a long-running labour dispute failed, the company and a trade union said on Wednesday. The Oaky North mine is largely being operated by non-union staff and contractors during the lockout, which started in June, with no impact on production, said Glencore spokesman Francis De Rosa. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 06 - Bonn talks test global resolve to fix climate, without Trump

Governments will try to bolster a 2015 pact to combat climate change at annual talks in Germany from Monday strained by President Donald Trump's plan to pull out and instead promote the U.S. coal and oil industries. Fiji's Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama, who will preside at the Nov. 6-17 talks of almost 200 nations in Bonn, says he wants more urgent action to cut greenhouse gases as part of the 195-nation Paris Agreement. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 02 - Indian petcoke ban to boost coal imports amid already tight market

A ban on petroleum coke around the Indian capital of New Delhi starting from Wednesday will require the country to raise its imports of coal to replace the fuel, just as Asia is heading into the tightest market conditions for coal in years. India's annual demand for petroleum coke, an energy intensive fuel that emits harmful sulphur oxides and ample carbon dioxide when burned, has doubled to 27 million tonnes in the past four years. The country imports about 14 million tonnes annually, mainly from the United States. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 02 - China's top coal province Shanxi to start winter pollution war early

Shanxi province, China's biggest coal producing region, has ordered local governments to further restrict industrial activity beginning on Saturday to curb winter smog, it said in a notice on Thursday. The province said local governments must "strictly implement" emergency emission cutting measures and impose limits on industrial output and freight beginning on Nov. 4 after forecasters predicted a bout of unfavourable weather. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 23 - No future(s): Asian financial coal trading dries up as Noble declines, Glencore rules

Financial trading of thermal coal has virtually ceased in Asia as a result of the woes at one major trading house and the growing dominance of another, despite the region being by far the world's biggest consumer of the fuel. Asia gobbles up some 70 percent of all coal used for power generation, and the unprecedented demise of its futures market poses significant risks for utilities in particular. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 20 - Rio Tinto opens books to over half-dozen possible suitors for Australia coal mines – sources 

Global miner Rio Tinto has opened its books to more than half a dozen potential buyers of its two remaining Australian coal mines as it winds down the sales process, two people familiar with the sale process said on Friday. The mines have attracted the attention of some of Australia's established coal miners, as well as private equity groups attracted to the positive outlook for selling metallurgical coal to Asian steel mills at robust prices, according to the people. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 18 - Seven miners killed, one missing in coal mine collapse in Turkey 

Seven miners were killed and another was missing after part of a coal mine in Turkey's southeastern province of Sirnak collapsed on Tuesday, government spokesman Bekir Bozdag said. Search and rescue teams were looking for the missing worker who was trapped at the site. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 17 - Australia shuns clean energy target in policy overhaul

Australia's government on Tuesday rejected calls to set a clean energy target, instead scrapping aid for renewable projects and adopting a fuel-neutral energy policy that it said could keep the country's lights on and cut power prices. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull won support from his Conservative party for a plan to end subsidies for renewable energy after 2020, while requiring energy retailers to guarantee an energy mix that would bring both reliable power and lower carbon emissions. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 16 - China's Shanxi plans nine more coal mine closures this year 

Authorities in Shanxi, one of China's biggest coal-producing regions, said on Saturday they plan to close nine more coal mines by the end of this year, according to a post on a government website. The planned closures come after authorities in the region vowed to suspend or slow the construction of 12 million tonnes of coal production capacity from 2016 to 2020 to battle oversupply. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 13 - The US solar industry's new growth region: Trump country 

President Donald Trump's administration has vowed to revive the coal industry, challenged climate-change science and blasted renewable energy as expensive and dependent on government subsidies. And yet the solar power industry is booming across Trump country, fueled by falling development costs and those same subsidies, which many Republicans in Congress continue to support. Click here to read full stories.

Oct 13 - Rio Tinto's $2 bln coal assets attract investor consortium - sources 

A group of investors including buyout firm Apollo and pension fund Canada Pension Plan (CPP) is bidding for coal assets put up for sale by mining giant Rio Tinto, which could fetch $2 billion, sources familiar with the matter told Reuters. The sale, run by Credit Suisse, of the Kestrel and Hail Creek coking coal mines is part of Rio's planned exit from Australian coal to focus on iron ore, copper and aluminum. Click here to read full stories.

Sep 27 - Power blackout leaves darkened Puerto Rico isolated and paralyzed 

Broken electricity poles and streetlights list into the middle of highways. Satellite images show an island devoid of light. Cellular phone service is non-existent. Hurricane Maria's devastation of the U.S. territory of Puerto Rico last week left the entire island and its 3.4 million residents without power. Click here to read full stories.

Sep 22 - Diverging fortunes: China coal futures sink while physical firms 

China's physical thermal coal prices strengthened on Thursday as traders worried about logjams at ports even as futures investors bailed out at their fastest pace in months after Beijing signalled it was ready to take more steps to boost supplies.It is relatively unusual for the physical and futures markets to go in opposite directions and the divergence reflects conflicting views in the world's top coal consumer about the outlook for the fuel ahead of the winter heating season. Click here to read full stories.

Sep 21 - Finland's Fortum in talks to buy E.ON's stake in Uniper 

Finnish power company Fortum is in advanced talks to buy for 3.8 billion euros ($4.6 billion) German utility E.ON's remaining stake in Uniper, the power stations and trading business it spun off last year.The news in statements by both Fortum and E.ON on Wednesday was greeted with dismay by Uniper, which some analysts said could be broken up by Fortum. Click here to read full stories.

Sep 15 - Peaking and creaking: Australia's summer set to bring new power supply squeeze 

Australia faces another electricity supply squeeze towards the end of the year, with wholesale power prices already soaring in the latest sign that the country's creaking power infrastructure is struggling to keep up with peak summer demand. In the latest red flag that the country's upcoming hot season could see a repeat of last year's supply shortages, wholesale power prices for South Australia for baseload (24 hours) delivery in December have shot up to A$130 ($103.91) per megawatt-hour (MWh), nearly a third above their current level. Click here to read full stories.

Sep 12 - With 7.4 million without power, utility workers get respect 

When more than 7.4 million homes and businesses are without power after a hurricane, utility workers tend to get noticed a bit more than usual. That’s what Gus Beyersdorf, 40, and his colleague Nick Jensen, 32, utility workers from Wisconsin, found out while inspecting power lines in Florida on Monday. The two - among the thousands of power-line workers brought in from out-of-state by major utilities - spent about five minutes outside a house in Fort Lauderdale, when two cars with women who said they lived in the neighborhood stopped to inquire about the return of power to their homes - obviously trying to get their attention. Click here to read full stories.

Sep 11 - Irma knocks out power to nearly 4 million in Florida - utilities 

Hurricane Irma knocked out power to nearly 4 million homes and businesses in Florida on Sunday, threatening millions more as it crept up the state's west coast, and full restoration of service could take weeks, local electric utilities said. Irma hit Florida on Sunday morning as a dangerous Category 4 storm, the second highest level on the five-step Saffir-Simpson scale, but by afternoon as it barreled up the west coast, it weakened to a Category 2 with maximum sustained winds of 110 miles per hour (177 kph). Click here to read full stories.

Sep 11 - Mongolian miners plan coal output hikes as China demand rises 

Mongolia's coal miners are looking to ramp up production to meet growing demand from top buyer China, but longstanding transportation issues continue to hold back sales, industry executives said at a conference.Mongolia's mining-dependent economy grew at its slowest in seven years in 2016 as a result of declining commodity demand, but growth has picked up this year after a revival in cross-border coal trade with China. Click here to read full stories.

Sep 07 - Hackers gain entry into U.S., European energy sector, Symantec warns

Advanced hackers have targeted United States and European energy companies in a cyber espionage campaign that has in some cases successfully broken into the core systems that control the companies' operations, according to researchers at the security firm Symantec. Malicious email campaigns have been used to gain entry into organizations in the United States, Turkey and Switzerland, and likely other countries well, Symantec said in a report published on Wednesday. Click here to read full stories.

Sep 06 - Coal crunch sees China's rustbelt exposed to risk of winter power, heat cuts

China's northeastern industrial heartland may face winter power and heating cuts after authorities in Beijing spurned requests from provincial providers for help securing coal supplies after two major mines were forced to halt output, utilities warned. Coal-dependent power in the major manufacturing province of Heilongjiang issued their plea to the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) via the state power grid after authorities suspended work at mines in neighbouring Inner Mongolia last month, according to documents posted on the website of coal publication sxcoal.com. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 31 - China plans safety inspections at coal mines, chemical plants 

China's cabinet said the government will launch nationwide safety inspections of coal mines, chemical plants, gas operators and logistics firms, starting in September.The new round of inspections comes after an environmental crackdown in August roiled commodities markets, while safety inspections in major coal producing regions have crimped supplies, fuelling a price rally.  Click here to read full stories.

Aug 31 - Energy hogs: China targets farm waste as a 'clean' power source 

China will pay farmers to turn animal poo into fertiliser and power, the Ministry of Agriculture said on Wednesday, as Beijing cracks down on agricultural pollution that has for years leaked into rivers and lakes, angering Chinese residents.China will give farmers subsidies to build animal waste processing facilities to make fertilisers or to treat manure so it's safe for disposal, and to install biogas plants that use methane to generate electricity, according a government plan announced on Aug. 1. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 29 - China set to create world's top utility with latest government merger 

China's top coal miner Shenhua Group Corp Ltd will take over China Guodian Group Corp, among the country's top five state power producers, in a deal that will create the world's largest power utility worth $278 billion. The companies have been in talks about a merger for several months as Beijing aims to shake up its indebted and inefficient state sector, streamline the number of companies and create globally competitive firms in sectors including power generation, shipping and metals. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 29 - Glencore puts 2nd coal mine on block amid corporate rethink 

Glencore on Monday said it was looking to sell a second Australian coal mine, part of the Swiss-based resource giant's rethink on how it deploys capital as its reins in debt and commodities prices rise. Together with its Japanese joint venture partners, Itochu Corp and Sumitomo Corp, Glencore said it would start a "sales process" for its Rolleston mine, which produces thermal coal used for making electricity. The mine, though, is geographically removed from Glencore's main collieries, leaving it less economic from a shipping standpoint. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 29 - Brave decision! Adani to start Australian coal mine on its own: Russell 

Adani Enterprises' decision to start building Australia's biggest coal mine would appear at face value to be a straightforward announcement that a major project is finally getting underway. The Indian conglomerate said on Aug. 28 that it will start work in October on the Carmichael coal mine in Queensland state, initially using A$400 million ($317 million) of its own funds.  Click here to read full stories.

Aug 28 - Adani aims to ship first coal from Australian mine in March 2020

India's Adani Enterprises said on Monday it plans to begin work in October to build the controversial Carmichael coal project in Australia, aiming to make its first shipment in March 2020. The project has been delayed for years by court challenges from green groups and indigenous groups concerned about climate change, and the impact on native land and water supply, but those challenges have been rejected. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 28 - Glencore's Zambian unit says investments at risk due to power supply 

Glencore's Zambian unit Mopani Copper Mines (MCM) said on Friday power supply restrictions to its operations due to a price dispute with its electricity supplier has put its investments at risk. Copperbelt Energy Corp. (CEC), which buys power from the state-owned electricity company and sells to mines, slashed supply to Mopani to 94 MW from 130 MW following a dispute over new, higher tariffs. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 23 - Glencore's Zambian unit may shed 4,700 workers on power shortages

Mopani Copper Mines, Glencore's Zambianunit, said on Tuesday it may lay off nearly 5,000 workers due to a dispute with its electricity supplier over prices that has led to reduced power supply to its operations. Copperbelt Energy Corp. (CEC), which buys power from the state-owned electricity company and sells to mines, slashed supply to Mopani to 94 MW from 190 MW following a dispute over new, higher tariffs. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 23 - Polish coal mining swings to profit on prices, restructuring - PAP 

Net profit at Polish coal mines stood at 1.45 billion zlotys ($400.06 million) in the first half of the year compared to a 800 million zlotys loss a year earlier amid higher coal prices and restructuring, data from a state agency showed on Tuesday. Data by the Industrial Development Agency (ARP), quoted by state-run news wire PAP, said the average price, including thermal and coking coal, rose by 38 percent year on year in the first half of the year to 317.09 zlotys per tonne. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 23 - Brazil's move to privatize Eletrobras sparks investor euphoria 

Brazil's surprise move to privatize Centrais Eletricas Brasileiras SA sent the utility's shares soaring nearly 50 percent on Tuesday as investors bet the plan augured further moves to loosen the government's grip on the economy.The transaction should be concluded by mid-2018 and could involve the sale of new stock to help replenish the capital of Eletrobras, as the holding company is known, Mines and Energy Minister Fernando Coelho Filho told Reuters. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 22 - China sacks executives, officials after Shanxi coal mine accident

Senior company executives and local officials have been removed from their jobs following a deadly accident in a northern China coal mine, state media reported. Ten people, including chairman of Shanxi Lv Xin Co Ltd, a subsidiary of Jinneng Group, and local officials, have been sacked for negligence of duties, the report said late on Monday.  Click here to read full stories.

Aug 18 - Taking aim at China, India tightens power grid, telecoms rules 

India is tightening the rules for businesses entering its power transmission sector and making stringent checks on both power and telecoms equipment for malware - moves that government and industry officials say aim to check China's advance into sensitive sectors. Chinese firms such as Harbin Electric, Dongfang Electronics, Shanghai Electric and Sifang Automation either supply equipment or manage power distribution networks in 18 cities in India. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 18 - Glencore coal miners return to work in Australia but vow more strike action 

Coal mine workers from seven Glencore collieries in Australia returned to work on Thursday after a four-day work stoppage, with many voting to keep up pressure on the company over wages and job security. More than 1,400 workers met in the mining hub of Singleton, New South Wales, about 200 km (125 miles) north of Sydney, this week and voted to continue industrial action that began in June against the Swiss-based company, according to a statement from the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 16 - Shanxi coal company ordered to shut some open-pit mines after fatal accident 

Jinneng Co Ltd has been ordered to shut its open-pit coal mines in the city of Jinzhong in Shanxi province following a deadly accident at one of its mines, state media said on Wednesday, as scrutiny of safety across China's vast mining intensifies. Authorities will carry out safety checks at the mines that are shuttered after four people were killed and five were missing following an accident at a mine in Jinzhong run by Lv Xin Coal Co Ltd, a subisidary of Jinneng, on Aug. 11 Click here to read full stories.

Aug 14 - Zambia's CEC confirms reduced power supply to Glencore's copper miner 

Copperbelt Energy Corp (CEC), Zambia's main supplier of power for its mines, confirmed on Sunday that it has restricted the amount of electricity it supplies to Glencore unit Mopani Copper Mines (MCM) because of a dispute over tariffs. Mopani said on Saturday that it has suspended operations in certain areas after CEC restricted power supply to its mines in both Kitwe and Mufulira. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 11 - Glencore raises trading guidance, sees electric vehicles boosting demand

Mining group Glencore raised earnings guidance for its trading business, citing higher commodity prices, and said on Thursday increased take-up of electric vehicles and demand for energy storage would boost demand for its products. Following the commodities downturn of 2015-16, big miners have repaired their balance sheets to help position themselves for growth. Glencore has cut debt and also has a mix of assets that could help it benefit from an upsurge in electric cars. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 11 - Adani picks funding advisor for giant Australia coal mine - sources 

India's Adani Enterprises has appointed corporate finance firm Grant Samuel to advise on funding for its multi-billion dollar coal mine in the Australian outback, two sources with knowledge of the matter said on Thursday. Analysts have raised doubts about whether Adani can fund what would be Australia's biggest coal mine given opposition from green groups and volatile coal prices. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 10 - China July coal imports at 5-mth low on tightening import curbs 

China's coal imports in July fell to their lowest in five months as Beijing's efforts to combat pollution curbed utilities' ability to buy cheaper foreign fuel and caused backlogs in ports, customs data showed on Tuesday. Arrivals of China's favourite fuel totaled 19.46 million tonnes in July, data from the General Administration of Customs showed. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 04 - China in talks to sell electricity to Myanmar amid warming ties

Energy-hungry Myanmar is in initial talks to buy electricity from China, according to officials and documents reviewed by Reuters, in the latest sign of warming ties with Beijing under leader Aung San Suu Kyi. Since taking office in April last year, Suu Kyi has sought to repair relations that were strained when a previous semi-civilian government in 2011 blocked a China-backed dam, which was supposed to send most of its electricity to China's Yunnan province. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 03 - Germany's long goodbye to coal despite Merkel's green push

Burning coal for power looks set to remain the backbone of Germany's energy supply for decades yet, an apparent contrast to Chancellor Angela Merkel's ambitions for Europe's biggest economy to be a role model in tackling climate change. Merkel is avoiding the sensitive subject of phasing out coal, which could hit tens of thousands of jobs, in the campaign for the Sept. 24 election, in which she hopes to win a fourth term. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 01 - U.S company Xcoal Energy to sell steam coal to fuel-strapped Ukraine 

A Pennsylvania-based coal company said on Monday it signed its first contract with Ukraine to sell coal that is burned to produce electricity in a deal sped along by the U.S. and Ukrainian governments. Privately held Xcoal Energy & Resources agreed to supply Centrenergo PJSC, one of the largest power companies in Ukraine, with 700,000 tons of steam coal in coming months. Click here to read full stories.

Aug 01 - Utilities ditch reactors that launched US nuclear renaissance 

South Carolina utilities said on Monday they are abandoning two unfinished reactors that were once hailed as the start of a U.S. nuclear power renaissance before they were dogged by billions of dollars in cost overruns. The reactors were proposed a decade ago when U.S. policymakers expected more than a dozen new nuclear power plants to provide carbon-free electricity. In the years since, however, a shale revolution unleashed a glut of cheaper natural gas, the Fukushima accident in Japan raised fresh safety concerns and the Trump administration is now unwinding steps aimed at countering climate change. Click here to read full stories.

Jul 31 - U.S. coal exports surge, but thank China, not Trump: Russell 

U.S. coal miners are almost certainly cheering the sharp rise in exports of their product, but their good fortune is mainly the result of Chinese domestic policies that have driven up global prices for the polluting fuel. While U.S. President Donald Trump and his administration would no doubt like to claim credit for reviving the coal industry, it's likely there has been virtually no structural change that will ensure a sustained boost for U.S. coal exports. Click here to read full stories.

Jul 28 - At "bare bones" Noble Group, staff exits and debt pose more risks

Noble Group  is slimming down drastically to its core Asian coal-trading business, but that may not be enough to revive its fortunes due to a staff exodus, shrunken balance sheet and debts of more than $3 billion, analysts and industry sources say. Once Asia's largest commodities trading house, Singapore-listed Noble is a shadow of what it was during the boom years, when it snapped up assets from sugar mills to coal mines and expanded globally to rival Glencore and Trafigura. Click here to read full stories.

Jul 28 - U.S. coal exports soar, in boost to Trump energy agenda, data shows

U.S. coal exports have jumped more than 60 percent this year due to soaring demand from Europe and Asia, according to a Reuters review of government data, allowing President Donald Trump's administration to claim that efforts to revive the battered industry are working. The increased shipments came as the European Union and other U.S. allies heaped criticism on the Trump administration for its rejection of the Paris Climate Accord, a deal agreed by nearly 200 countries to cut carbon emissions from the burning of fossil fuels like coal. Click here to read full stories.

Jul 27 - Glencore signs deals to buy 49 percent of Hunter Valley coal

Glencore said on Thursday it had signed agreements to buy a 49 percent stake in coal mines in Australia's Hunter Valley for just over $1.1 billion, getting a share of assets it was expected to miss out on to China's Yancoal. Glencore has long wanted Rio Tinto's Hunter Valley Operations (HVO) but Yancoal Australia was confirmed last month as the preferred bidder for Rio's Australian Coal & Allied division, which owns the mines. Click here to read full stories.

Jul 24 - Germany wants more EU sanctions on Russia over Siemens Crimea turbines - sources

Germany is urging the European Union to add up to four more Russian nationals and companies to the bloc's sanctions blacklist over Siemens gas turbines delivered to Moscow-annexed Crimea, two sources in Brussels said. The EU has barred its firms from doing business with Crimea since the 2014 annexation, imposed sanctions on Russian individuals and entities, and curbed cooperation with Russia in energy, arms and finance over its role in the crisis in Ukraine. Click here to read full stories.

Jul 24 - After China-induced price spike, coal set to resume long-term decline

Coal prices' march to eight-month highs, driven by China's huge appetite for power consumption, looks like an interlude in a longer-term decline and is seen losing traction later this year. Investors widely anticipate a slow demise for coal use due to policies encouraging cleaner natural gas and renewable energy generation, but the shorter-term outlook for the industry has seen a sharp reversal of fortunes. Click here to read full stories.

Jul 18 - China says coal supply is sufficient for current power demands

China's top planning body said on Tuesday that the country has sufficient coal supplies to meet its current power demands, as Beijing seeks to ease concerns about tightening supply due to earlier government-enforced cutbacks. The National Development and Reform Commision (NDRC) said in a statement it would "properly deal" with the impact of cutting capacity in the world's top consumer of the fuel, and would try to stabilise supplies and prevent supply disruptions. Click here to read full stories.

Jul 14 - no report available due to French National holiday, Bastille Day.

Jul 13 - Coal mine crackdown dims prospects for Mongolia's fortune seekers

Working 50 metres (164 feet) under ground with minimal air supply, Uuganbaatar is one of thousands of Mongolians trying to make a living digging for coal. Although the mining season does not begin until autumn, when the ground freezes and work is safer, the 31-year-old and his colleagues are seeking to gain a head start by digging a shaft in Nalaikh, one of the nine districts of Mongolia's capital Ulaanbaatar, in late June. Click here to read full stories.

Jul 12 - Coal plan sparks ire as Myanmar struggles to keep lights on

Opposition to a planned $3 billion coal-fired power plant in eastern Myanmar is highlighting the challenges facing Aung San Suu Kyi's government in crafting a coherent energy policy in one of Asia's poorest and most electricity-starved countries. With only a third of the country's 60 million people connected to the grid and major cities experiencing blackouts, finding investors is tough for Myanmar and it is now looking at options, from coal to deep-sea gas, to boost its power supply. Click here to read full stories.

Jul 10 - Coal markets brace for China reaction after prices near 600 yuan threshold

Mining and electric utility executives in China are preparing for a possible government intervention into coal markets after prices hit the 600 yuan ($88.25) a tonne threshold the state planner said would trigger steps to cool prices. A prolonged heatwave across northern China, hydropower cuts in the south, a fresh crackdown on mine safety and imports curbs have triggered a weeks-long rally in the world's top buyer of the fuel. Click here to read full stories.

Jul 07 - Coal lines to South Africa terminal halted by violent protests 

Rail operations that transport coal to South Africa's Richards Bay Coal Terminal (RBCT) have been halted because of violent community protests, state-run logistics group Transnet said on Thursday. "Transnet has experienced interruptions to operations on the Richards Bay Coal Line as a result of violent community protests ... The protests relate to community demands for jobs and business opportunities," Transnet said in a statement. Click here to read full stories.

Jul 06 - It Was Stormy, but Aussies Are Getting Over Debbie (Dow Jones)
Cyclone Debbie swept over Australia's Queensland coast in late March full of wind and fury, doing enough damage to infrastructure that coal exports collapsed for a while as the rail network was inundated. Still, getting over Debbie hasn't taken that long. Australia's trade surplus jumped to A$2.47 billion in May as coal exports surged over 60%. Citi says the return to full normality in the Queensland coal fields will take a little while yet, but the industry is clearly on the rebound. Miners are still in catch-up mode as the lost tonnage of coal exports could be as high as 10 million tons, it adds. This, together with a stabilization in prices, should see coal exports remain strong in the near term, which in turn will help sustain a sizable trade surplus, in Australia.

Jul 05 - Too much rain: China's floods roil hydropower, corn supplies 

Severe flooding across southern China has forced the world's largest power plant to slash capacity on Tuesday, delayed grain on barges and damaged farms along the Yangtze River, as the death toll rose to 56 and economic costs hit almost $4 billion. Heavy rainfall, mudslides and hail caused by the annual rainy season has killed 56 people and 22 people were missing across 11 provinces and regions as of Tuesday morning, according to the Ministry of Civil Affairs. Click here to read full stories.

Jul 05 - Indian utility bets $10 bln on coal power despite surplus, green concerns 

India's state-run power utility plans to invest $10 billion in new coal-fired power stations over the next five years despite the electricity regulator's assessment that thermal plants now under construction will be able to meet demand until 2027. In the first phase, India's biggest power producer, NTPC, plans tobuild three new plants with a combined capacity of more than 5 gigawatts (GW), nearly double the capacity of those currently being phased out, five senior company officials said. Click here to read full stories.

Jul 05 - European utilities ready for new wave of mergers 

Spanish power company Gas Natural has fired the starting gun in what is expected to be the biggest upheaval among European utility companies for a decade. Chairman Isidre Faine has contacted his counterpart at Portuguese rival Energias de Portugal (EDP) about a 35 billion euro ($40 billion) deal to create Europe's fourth biggest utility firm by market value, according to sources.  Click here to read full stories.

Jul 04 - Australian spot coal prices hit highest since April amid mine outages, strong demand

Prices for thermal coal for export from Australia's Newcastle terminal have jumped nearly a fifth since mid-May and are at their highest since April, with mining outages tightening supply amid strong northern hemisphere summer demand. Dam restrictions in China following excessive rains are also reducing hydropower capacity there, including at the world's biggest power station, forcing utilities to ramp up output at coal-fired utilities. Click here to read full stories.

Jun 26 - China's thermal coal market dampened by rains, prospects for hydropower 

China's coal futures dropped more than 1 percent on Friday, as rains raised expectations of higher hydropower production and the prospects of easing coal demand from utilities dampened the market outlook. The most active Zhengzhou thermal coal futures contract dipped 1.2 percent on Friday to 571.2 yuan ($83.52) per tonne, its third straight day to decline and its biggest daily drop in one month. Click here to read full stories.

Jun 23 - China May coal imports from Indonesia, Mongolia jump - customs 

China's coal imports from Indonesia in May rose 24.5 percent from a year ago to 3.86 million tonnes, the highest level since July 2012, customs data showed on Friday. Mongolian arrivals during May rose 42 percent from a year earlier to 3.16 million tonnes, while supply from Australia, China's largest coal supplier, fell 5 percent from a year ago, the data showed. Click here to read full stories.

Jun 22 - China to cut surcharges on thermal power plants, paving way for price rise- document 

China's state planner will reduce surcharges paid by coal-fired power producers, paving the way for provincial authorities to raise prices charged to the grid operator, according to a document sent to regional officials and power producers and seen by Reuters. The change is effective July 1, according to the document sent by the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), and will help utilities manage rising coal prices. Click here to read full stories.

Jun 22 - Extreme heat grips Northern Hemisphere on summer solstice 

Extreme heat across large tracts of the Northern Hemisphere raised fears for crops in China, fuelled forest fires in Portugal and Russia's Far East, forced flight cancellations in the Southwest U.S., and melted tarmac on roads in Britain. As Wednesday marked the summer solstice - the longest day of the year - forecasters said temperatures in Paris were expected to hit 37 Celsius (100 Fahrenheit), Madrid could see 38C, and London was set for 34C with warnings of thunderstorms. Click here to read full stories.

Jun 21 - America’s hungriest wind and solar power users: big companies 

Major U.S. corporations such as Wal-Mart Stores Inc and General Motors Co have become some of America’s biggest buyers of renewable energy, driving growth in an industry seen as key to helping the United States cut carbon emissions. Last year nearly 40 percent of U.S. wind contracts were signed by corporate power users, along with university and military customers. That's up from just 5 percent in 2013, according to the American Wind Energy Association trade group. Click here to read full stories.

Jun 19 - From dates to power, China's exchanges rush for futures sweet spot 

China's major commodity exchanges are scrambling to launch futures contracts on a range of products - from dates to electricity - as they move to tap investor risk appetite and offer the vast industrial complex ways to protect revenue.On Friday, executives from the top three exchanges - Zhengzhou Commodity Exchange, Shanghai Futures Exchange and Dalian Commodity Exchange - reeled off 14 products from fruit to chemicals to power that they are studying as possible candidates for new derivatives. Click here to read full stories.

Jun 19 - China's coal futures forward curve turns bullish as mercury rises 

China's thermal coal futures rallied to a record high on Friday, lifting September futures to a premium over October, as a prolonged hot spell spurred power demand and low water levels dented hopes of higher hydro output, said three industry sources.The buying lifted futures for delivery in September to a premium of 6 yuan ($0.88) per tonne over October, in a structure known as a backwardation, when prompt prices are higher than those for later months, that reflects tightening supplies. Click here to read full stories.

Jun 14 - Crisis at South Africa's Eskom deepens as chairman resigns 

Eskom's chairman quit on Tuesday, worsening a growing leadership crisis at the South African power utility, which is at the centre of influence-peddling allegations.Ben Ngubane, who had been chairman since 2015, is leaving two weeks after the government reversed Eskom's decision to reinstate Brian Molefe as chief executive. Click here to read full stories.

Jun 08 - Italy’s new capacity market facing delays (ICIS)
Italy’s capacity market looks certain to be delayed for several months due to EU concerns about the design, ICIS understands. Critical points raised by the competition directorate within the European Commission in recent discussions with the Italian regulator include:
• The mechanism to determine the bidding curve at the capacity market auctions
• The modality in which demand-side response will be able to take part in the auction
• The participation of capacity located beyond Italy’s borders, which Italian transmission system operator (TSO) Terna proposed to admit to the scheme but at less favourable conditions.
• The level set for the strike price of the reliability call options around which the Italian capacity market would be designed.

The strike price proposed by national regulator AEEGSI would be set using the production costs of an open-cycle gas turbine (OCGT) power plant as reference point, after an analysis from Terna indicated OCGT was the marginal production technology in the system. This would be in the region of €80-90/MWh, ICIS understands. The level of the strike price is potentially the most contentious of the points raised by the commission, which is checking the market design against potential profiles of illegal state aid. “The level of the strike price is key. Setting it at the costs of an OCGT would have a direct impact on the way prices are formed on the spot markets,” said Pietro Baldovin, head of the Italian task force at the European Federation of Energy Traders.

The decision to set the strike price in line with OCGT costs is largely seen by market participants as a lifebelt to Italy’s gas-fired power producers, which have seen profit margins plummet in recent years because of lower demand and competition from renewable sources. However, AEEGSI underlined in the past that the capacity market will be technology neutral and favour the most flexible generation sources – potentially hydropower plants

Tight deadline
Italy’s capacity market has been delayed several times since the Italian government and regulator first engaged with the EU seeking clearance for its scheme. Although still unofficially, 2018 has often been indicated as the start year for the capacity market, most recently by the ministry of economic development when presenting the national energy strategy guidelines to the parliament in May. Electricity incumbent Enel also said in March that it was expecting payments under the scheme to start in 2018 after a late-2017 first auction. According to Italian wholesale electricity market participants recently reached by ICIS, a number of companies have taken positions on 2018 forward contracts taking into account the bearish effect that a capacity market geared on OCGT costs could have on spot prices.
In an annual recap of its activities published on 26 May, AEEGSI said that ironing out all differences with the commission is likely to take until the end of summer 2017.
This would leave AEEGSI and Terna with only three months to finalise auction rules and set up the first capacity market auction for a 2018 start of payments – a time horizon considered too tight by sources.
Terna and AEEGSI did not respond to requests for comment on Thursday by the time of publication.

Jun 07 - Here comes the sun: investors increasingly hot on solar projects in S.E. Asia

Investors are increasingly excited about the prospects for much faster growth in the solar power industry in Southeast Asia, which has until now been a backwater for renewable energy. They say that the region is in a perfect position to benefit from rapidly declining prices in solar panels.  Click here to read full stories.

Jun 06 - India's Adani backs go-ahead for $4 bln Australia coal mine 

India's Adani Enterprises gave final investment approval on Tuesday for its $4 billion Carmichael coal mine and railway in Australia's north, shifting the focus to fund raising for the controversial project. Adani, which hopes to secure a A$900 million ($670 million) government loan, said in a statement it had given "final investment decision approval" to build what would be Australia's biggest coal mine. Click here to read full stories.

Jun 02 - S.Korea plans energy U-turn away from coal, nuclear

A proposed energy U-turn by South Korea's new government would put the environment at the centre of energy policy, shifting one of the world's staunchest supporters of coal and nuclear power towards natural gas and renewables. If implemented, the ambitious plans by the world's fourth biggest coal importer and No.2 liquefied natural gas (LNG) buyer will have a big impact on producers. South Korea's LNG imports could jump by more than 50 percent by 2030, while coal shipments could peak as early as next year. Click here to read full stories.

May 31 - Rout in rubber futures triggered a panicky selloff in iron ore and coal (Dow Jones)
- Chinese industrial commodities slumped Wednesday following a 4-day holiday weekend as a rout in rubber futures triggered a panicky selloff in iron ore and coal. Analysts say the action underscores a pessimistic 2H demand outlook. Rubber, traded in Shanghai, fell 5% at around 10:30am, triggering wider jitters. "In a weak market, any major fluctuation in one commodity can easily cause a contagion of fear," said Fan Qingtian at Nanhua Futures. Iron ore had already been weak, falling the last 4 days of last week. September futures skidded 6% to put prices at the lowest level in nearly 7 months. Meanwhile, coke and coking-coal futures slumped 7.6% and 9%, respectively.

May 29 - China's Shanxi vows to suspend or slow construction of 120 mln tons of coal capacity 

Authorities in Shanxi, one of China's biggest coal-producing regions, have vowed to suspend or slow the construction of 120 million tonnes of coal production capacity from 2016 to 2020, the official Xinhua agency reported on Sunday.The northern province will also suspend the construction of more coal mines over the period to further reduce capacity, Xinhua reported, citing a recent coal industry development plan published by the local government. Click here to read full stories.

May 25 - Coal India wins tax-cut boost as environmentalists fret 

State-run Coal India Ltd, saddled with millions of tonnes of unsold coal, is expected to be the biggest beneficiary of a controversial government decision to more than halve the sales tax on the fuel after a jump in local supplies. The world's third-largest greenhouse gas emitting country said last Friday it would lower the duty on coal from July 1 and impose a new 18 percent tax on solar cells and modules as part of a broader tax overhaul. Click here to read full stories.

May 22 - RWE, Engie studying share swap to form Franco-German energy giant 

RWE and Engie are studying a possible share swap that could create a Franco-German giant in power grids, renewables and energy services with a market value of about 50 billion euros ($55.8 billion). An Engie-RWE alliance would represent a breakthrough as the first truly cross-border utility in Europe since the EU began pushing for a single energy market decades ago. Click here to read full stories.

May 22 - Adani defers Australian coal project investment decision 

India's Adani Enterprises has deferred a final investment decision (FID) on its long-delayed Australian Carmichael coal project, as the Queensland state government has yet to sign off on a royalty agreement for the mine, an Adani spokesman said on Monday. "Adani is advised that the Queensland cabinet did not consider any submission or make a decision on royalties for the Adani project today," Adani's spokesman in Australia said. Click here to read full stories.

May 18 - CYBER ATTACK .WNCRY continue
- we are displeased to announce to our customers that our servers have been contaminated with WNCRY, following last week Cyber attack everybody heard about.
- despite our best efforts, the serveur hosting all our swap calculators cannot be cleaned, and therefore will be discarded. We shall have to buy a new one, this time from OVH Private Cloud. Full installation and setting-up and test might take a week.
- physical Cash Energy calculator including oil products / Natgas / LPG / Power / Emissions and Coal prices has been restored in a separate PC, updating 3 to 4 times a day.
- physical Cash Freight calculator including Tanker and Dry Bulk rates has been restored also in a separate PC, updating once per day.
- physical Cash Agri / Softs / Metals pages are safe and do run today as usual.
- once again we apology for all inconvenience, the less to say ? that WannaCRY has really made us cry !

May 18 - Coal market oversupply risks grow as producers boost output

The risk of oversupply in the global coal market is growing as suppliers respond to higher prices, though power demand in countries such as Indonesia may absorb some extra output, producers and analysts said. The global coal market is forecast to see oversupply of 16 million tonnes this year, Noble Resources chief coal analyst Rodrigo Echeverri said on Monday. Click here to read full stories.

May 18 - Indonesia coal output seen growing up to 5 pct this year and next - industry association

Indonesia, the world's top thermal coal exporter, could increase production of the fuel used in power stations by 5 percent in 2017 and 2018, the country's leading coal industry association said on Sunday. Indonesia's coal industry has benefited from higher prices this year after a downturn in 2015 and 2016 put many small producers out of business, though recent price declines could signal more difficulties ahead. Click here to read full stories.

May 18 - China April coal output up 9.9 pct y/y at 294.5 mln tonnes - stats 

China's coal output rose 9.9 percent in April from a year earlier to 294.5 million tonnes, the National Bureau of Statistics said on Monday. It is the second straight month that output has registered a year-on-year increase as mines have scrambled to reverse the government-enforced cuts last year to take advantage of soaring prices. Click here to read full stories.

May 17 - CYBER ATTACK .WNCRY continue
- we are displeased to announce to our customers that our servers have been contaminated with WNCRY, following last week Cyber attack.
- despite our best efforts, all our calculators were not fully cleaned this morning, and consequently ALL our SWAP pages are being discontinued until further notice ( and hopefully not more than a further day )
- physical Cash Energy calculator ( including oil products cash prices ) have been stopped too.
- Coal / Power / Emissions multi broker pages are safe and shld run today as usual.
- we are making our best efforts to restore cleaned version on all our servers, hopefully before End of this Day.

May 17 - Coal exporters should fret as China, India become policy-driven markets: Russell

Coal exporters may be feeling more comfortable about their future as they see both reasonable demand from Asia's top importers and prices which appear to be stabilising at levels that allow for decent profits. This renewed optimism was evident at this week's Coaltrans Asia conference on the Indonesian resort island of Bali, where much of the discussion among delegates at the region's biggest coal event was on plans for new capital spending and boosting output at existing mines. Click here to read full stories.

May 16 - Alert CYBER ATTACK .WNCRY
- we are displeased to announce to our customers that our servers have been contaminated with WNCRY, following last week Cyber attack.
- consequently ALL our swap calculators (and pages) are discontinued until further notice.
- physical Cash Energy calculator ( including oil products cash prices ) still working fine, but service will be interrupted for malware cleaning this afternoon.
- we are making our best efforts to restore cleaned version on all our servers, hopefully before End of the Day.

May 15 - Global coal market seen in 16 mln t oversupply in 2017 - Noble analyst

The global coal market is forecast to hit an oversupply of 16 million tonnes this year as production increase, Noble Resources chief coal analyst said on Monday. "Those (producers) who are going to expand into the second half of this year are going to have to face price pressure," Rodrigo Echeverri, the head of coal analysis at Noble Resources, told the Coaltrans Asia conference in Bali.

May 11 - China coal mines forced to plant trees, seal facilities in new green rules 

China will force collieries to plant trees, boost efficiency, cut down noise and seal off facilities from the outside world as part of a new "green mining" plan aimed at curbing pollution, according to a policy document published on Wednesday.In a comprehensive list of new rules covering coal, metals and chemicals, as well as oil and gas, the Ministry of Land and Resources said all newly built mines would be forced to meet green requirements immediately, while existing mines will also have to "upgrade" facilities. Click here to read full stories.

May 10 - Australia's cyclone-hit coal exporters face long port queues - miner 

Vessels loading coal from Australia's cyclone-hit Bowen Basin will face "significantly longer" port queues when the key Goonyella rail line returns to full capacity in the second half of May, a miner said on Wednesday.The delays mark a slow return to normality since shipments from the world's largest coking coal export region were disrupted by Cyclone Debbie in March and prices spiked as steelmakers turned to the spot market for supplies.  Click here to read full stories.

May 09 - Price cap pledge threatens competition in UK energy markets (ICIS)
- A commitment to cap gas and electricity retail tariffs by the UK’s Conservative Party has been attacked from various quarters of the energy industry, amid concerns that it could drive out competition from the market.
- After weeks of speculation and briefings, prime minister Theresa May confirmed on Tuesday that the Conservatives would put a cap on standard variable tariffs (SVTs) if they are re-elected.
- Polling has consistently suggested that the ruling Conservative Party is on course to form a majority government after the general election on 8 June. “It will protect around 17 million families on standard variable tariffs from being exploited with sudden and unjustified increases in bills,” Theresa May wrote in The Sun newspaper. Under the proposal, the cap will be set by British energy regulator Ofgem.
- However, the policy has been greeted with scepticism by many in the industry, who are fearful it will entrench the position of the largest suppliers in the market and discourage customers from switching supplier. “Today’s announcement effectively risks giving up on competition at a time when we need engaged consumers more than ever,” industry trade body Energy UK’s chief executive Lawrence Slade said. “A price cap might actually increase the number of customers who remain with the big six, as it would reduce the difference in price between suppliers and therefore remove the incentive to switch,” Baringa consultancy partner Ryan Thomson said.
- One of the largest utilities SSE said in a statement it “continues to caution against the unintended consequences of intervention and advises that the principle of competition in the energy market should be maintained and the practice of substantive consultation continued”. As of January, there were up to 45 suppliers active in the market, according to EnergyUK. The price cap policy is strongly reminiscent of the opposition Labour Party’s policy ahead of the last general election to freeze retail prices for 20 months. At the time, utility Centrica said it would not be “economically viable” to continue to operate and invest in a market of controlled prices when wholesale prices and environmental policy costs were increasing.

May 03 - China's coal imports take temporary hit from Australian cyclone: Russell 

China's coal imports from the seaborne market fell in April, with top exporting countries unable to fully cash in on the loss of Australian shipments in the wake of a powerful cyclone that knocked out mines and infrastructure.China's seaborne imports will be around 18.95 million tonnes in April, down from 19.5 million the prior month, according to vessel-tracking and port data compiled by Thomson Reuters Supply Chain and Commodity Forecasts. Click here to read full stories.

Apr 27 - Haunted by 2016, China's utilities ready for coal buying spree 

China's utilities are readying for a months-long buying spree to shore up thermal coal reserves ahead of the hotter summer months, sources say, in a strategy aimed at averting a supply crunch but which may drive prices higher.Top power generating companies will need to purchase more than 40 million tonnes of thermal coal by the end of June to provide a cushion of supply during the third quarter, the second-highest demand period of the year after winter, according to internal government calculations provided by a source briefed on the matter. Click here to read full stories.

Apr 27 - China allows North Korean coal ships to unload, but not import 

China has allowed ships carrying North Korea coal to unload in port for "humanitarian reasons", but the cargo will not go through customs, the Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday. Beijing banned imports of North Korean coal in late February for the rest of this year against the backdrop of Pyongyang's nuclear and missile tests and the increasingly bellicose rhetoric from the isolated country. Click here to read full stories.

Apr 26 - China will encourage coal miners to merge, restructure - state planner 

Beijing will encourage coal companies to merge and restructure to increase efficiency in the industry and take measures to return thermal coal prices to a "reasonable" range, China's economic planning agency said in a statement on Wednesday.The comment by the state planner, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), came after a meeting with coal mining firms on Tuesday as thermal coal prices continue to rally while utilities that consume the fuel lose money. Click here to read full stories.

Apr 25 - China March coal imports from Russia jump after North Korea ban - customs 

China's coal imports from Russia jumped to their highest in nearly three years in March, customs data showed on Tuesday, as the world's top buyer turned to alternative suppliers following its ban on imports from North Korea in February.Arrivals from Russia gained 19.5 percent to 2.3 million tonnes, the highest monthly total since June 2014, data from the General Administration of Customs showed on Tuesday.

Apr 24 - China says enforcing North Korea coal ban seriously, no violation 

China is enforcing its policy against North Korean coal imports seriously, and there have been no violations, the foreign ministry said on Friday after a report that North Korean ships had entered a Chinese port where coal imports are offloaded.Following repeated North Korean missile tests that drew international criticism, China in February banned all imports of coal from its reclusive neighbour, cutting off its most important export product. Click here to read full stories.

Apr 13 - Yancoal says Australia gov't clears Rio coal sale 

Australia's foreign investment watchdog has cleared Chinese- backed coal miner Yancoal Australia Ltd to pursue its $2.45 billion acquisition of Rio Tinto's Coal and Allied Division, Yancoal said on Thursday. The approval by Australia's Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) marked a critical milestone for Yancoal, representing the government's support for investment in the resources sector, Yancoal said. Click here to read full stories.

Apr 11 - North Korean ships head home after China orders coal returned 

A fleet of North Korean cargo ships is heading home to the port of Nampo, the majority of it fully laden, after China ordered its trading companies to return coal from the isolated country, shipping data shows.Following repeated missile tests that drew international criticism, China banned all imports of North Korean coal on Feb. 26, cutting off the country's most important export product. Click here to read full stories.

Apr 06 - Coal India actively looking to invest in coal assets in Australia 

Coal India Ltd is actively looking to acquire coking coal assets in Australia, a senior company official told Reuters, as the country looks to beef up its foreign coal assets.The state-controlled company, which in January also listed the United States, Columbia, Canada and Indonesia as target destinations for investment, is currently zeroing in on Australia and South Africa, the Coal India official said. Click here to read full stories.

Apr 04 - After Cyclone Debbie, China replaces Australian coal with U.S. cargoes - Reuters News

China, the world's biggest coking coal importer, is scrambling to cover Australian supply disruptions after Cyclone Debbie knocked out mines and rails by turning to an unusual source: the United States. Debbie, which hit Australia's Queensland state last week, caused the evacuation of several mines and damaged coal trains supplying export terminals, triggering two miners - Yancoal Australia and QCoal - to declare force majeure on its deliveries. With other miners like BHP Billiton and Glencore also affected by the storm's fallout, more disruptions may follow.  Click here to read full stories.

Apr 04 - Coal Could Surge Further on Shipment Setbacks (Dow Jones)
Disruptions to Australian coking-coal supplies could add US$100/ton or more to the price of the steelmaking commodity, says UBS. With key rail corridors expected to take weeks to repair, the investment bank estimates roughly 15 million tons of coal, or 5% of seaborne supplies, could be lost from the market. While rail operator Aurizon intends to look for alternative ways of getting coal from some mines to ports on the eastern coast, UBS thinks that will be tricky. "We expect spot prices to lift meaningfully from current levels." They jumped 15% Monday to $175.70/ton.

Apr 03 - Expect Significant Queensland Coal-Export Delays (Dow Jones)
Glencore says coal exports from Australia's Queensland state will "be significantly impacted until floodwaters recede and repairs to the rail systems are completed." While all of the company's coal mines there are operational, the world's biggest thermal-coal shipper notes there's still disruptions to rail and port operations in the region following Cyclone Debbie. Aurizon says it could be weeks before some of its rail lines, which Glencore uses to transport its coal to port, are restarted.

Mar 30 - Huge nuclear cost overruns push Toshiba's Westinghouse into bankruptcy 

Westinghouse Electric Co, a unit of Japanese conglomerate Toshiba Corp, filed for bankruptcy on Wednesday, hit by billions of dollars of cost overruns at four nuclear reactors under construction in the U.S. Southeast. The bankruptcy casts doubt on the future of the first new U.S. nuclear power plants in three decades, which were scheduled to begin producing power as soon as this week, but are now years behind schedule. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 22 - Coal plant pipeline shrinks globally in 2016 - research 

Construction of new coal plants fell sharply last year due to a clampdown on projects in China and less finance available in India, a report by three environmental groups said on Wednesday. By January this year, there was 570 gigawatts (GW) of coal power capacity in the pre-construction planning stage, down from 1,090 GW in January 2016, said the report by Greenpeace, U.S. group the Sierra Club and coal research group CoalSwarm. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 21 - French power far-curve premium over Belgium to remain amid nuclear doubt – traders (ICIS)
- A growing risk premium on French calendar year contracts over the Belgian power market is likely to remain until traders’ concerns over the reliability of EDF’s nuclear forecasts are laid to rest.
- The price premium between the two power markets flipped in mid-October last year when power incumbent EDF revised down its nuclear output targets for the rest of that year following a probe by the French nuclear safety authority into 12 reactor units. But since ASN ended the investigation on 24 February this year after approving the last nuclear unit for restart, the French Cal ’18, ’19 and ’20 have retained a premium over Belgium.

Consensus

There are several factors driving the French premium, with consensus behind the first:
• Traders lack confidence in nuclear generator EDF’s output forecasts, which adds a risk premium to calendar year products on the forward curve (see EDEM 22 February 2017).

Besides this, other factors at play include:
• Uncertainty about French nuclear safety authority ASN’s decisions regarding the lifetime of the oldest nuclear units in France
• Further uncertainty over the next French president’s energy policy. The first round of polling takes place on 23 April
• Increased costs for nuclear plants, such as higher operating expenditure, maintenance costs and safety investments, highlighted by the French Cour des Comptes, or Court of Audit
• Sluggish liquidity on the French and Belgian far curves which may yield more volatility and poor price signals that do not reflect fundamentals as well as more liquid markets would, although this could mean products are underpriced as well as overpriced.
“The premium is likely related to EDF’s forecasts of nuclear availability and actual delivery,” one utility-based trader in north Europe said. “Delivery has been below the forecasts in previous years and until that is resolved, the market is going to price in a premium.”
Another trader based in France said: “I have some doubts EDF will be able to generate nuclear [power] at levels similar to 2014-15, mainly due to technical issues.”
For its part, EDF has published year-ahead output targets that it says “take into account” previous issues including “controls and investigations” related to its nuclear fleet.

Premium
- ICIS does not assess Belgian wholesale power prices on a daily basis, but collects and publishes over-the-counter trade data whenever transactions are reported. By comparing trades occurring on the same date, the French Cal ’19 Baseload has been on average 10.5% above the Belgian equivalent in the period 26 January-9 March. And an even higher premium applied to Cal’ 20. The French Cal ’20 Baseload stood at a 17% premium to the Belgian Cal ’20, which has only traded three times this year, on 2 March. While the French Cal ’20 changed hands at €37.10/MWh, the Belgian equivalent traded at €31.70/MWh – a difference of €5.40/MWh.
- French forward curve power prices have historically been cheaper than Belgium, particularly in 2015 when two of Belgium’s seven nuclear units – the 1GW Doel 3 and Tihange 2 – were forced to go offline for safety reasons, causing serious fears about a supply crunch in Belgium during the winter.
- But the Belgian plants were approved in November 2015 to continue operations, and the concern has since shifted to the state of the French nuclear fleet and owner EDF’s output forecasts, several traders told ICIS. Only in 2016 did the average French front-year price push above Belgium, mainly because of the increases in France in the latter half of the year.

Nuclear output
- According to a plan published by the French energy ministry in summer 2016, annual nuclear generation is likely to drop by 10-65TWh in the period 2019-2023 from around 415TWh in 2015, depending on various factors such as the closure of the two 900MW Fessenheim reactors in 2018.
- More than half of total French nuclear capacity will reach 40 years of service by 2025 and extensions of at least part of the nuclear fleet will be necessary to guarantee security of supply. The number of units subject to ASN’s 10-year inspections is expected to jump from four in 2018 to seven in 2019 and 2020.
- However, two traders refuted the idea that a reduction in nuclear power was fuelling higher price premiums on the far curve, because this was already known to the market before October 2016 when the French premium to Belgium began to surge.
Some traders doubted that the premium will tail off in the medium- or long-term, even if the problem of unpredictable nuclear forecasts is solved.
- “That’s the million dollar question,” one trader said. “Despite the green light from the ASN regarding concerns on steam generators, there are a lot of uncertainties regarding future nuclear availability in France.
- “When it comes to policy, this would need an update post-French presidential election.”

Mar 21 - Toshiba's Westinghouse seeks U.S. bankruptcy financing - sources 

Westinghouse Electric Co LLC, the nuclear power plant developer owned by Japanese electronics company Toshiba Corp, is taking offers for a financing package to help it go through U.S. bankruptcy, people familiar with the matter said on Monday. Toshiba is reviewing proposals from financial institutions and investment firms about a so-called debtor-in-possession loan, which would carry the company through a potential bankruptcy, said two people familiar with the situation. The size of this financing package is expected to exceed $500 million, the people added. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 20 - India's Adani to finalise Australia coal investment plan by June 

India's Adani Enterprises said it would finalise an investment decision by June for its Carmichael coal project in the northern Australian state of Queensland, which has been delayed due to protests from environmental groups. For more than five years, Adani has battled opposition from green groups who fear the project will produce so much coal for export to India that it will require a mega-port expansion into the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 17 - U.S. judge says to approve Peabody's bankruptcy exit

Peabody Energy Corp, the world's largest private sector coal producer, said on Thursday it expects to exit its Chapter 11 bankruptcy in early April after a U.S. judge said he would approve its plan to slash over $5 billion of debt. U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Barry Schermer said he was ready to sign an order to approve Peabody's bankruptcy emergence once language regarding a late settlement of certain U.S. Department of Justice complaints had been finalized. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 16 - EDF tries new fixes in effort to restart nuclear reactors

EDF is employing new techniques in a bid to restart four nuclear reactors that have been idled for months due to a series of glitches, a top executive at the French utility said. EDF had to close two of the reactors following the discovery of manufacturing problems and document falsification at the foundry of its supplier Areva, while the others were shut down by a sealing problem and an accident. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 16 - Coal India missing output target doesn't matter, mining millions of tonnes more does: Russell 

What's more important? The fact the Coal India will once again miss its annual output target, or that it will produce over 31 million tonnes more than it did the previous year? Recent media reports have highlighted that Coal India Ltd (CIL), the state-owned behemoth that's the world's largest miner of the fuel, will likely miss its target of producing 598 million tonnes in the fiscal year ending March 31. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 15 - China cracks down on low-quality coal imports as traders report customs delays 

China is ramping up controls on imports of low-quality coal due to concerns about smog and overcapacity in the world's top coal consumer, a government official said on Wednesday, as traders report some cargoes have been delayed by customs checks. "As long as coal meets standards, we don't forbid imports, but we are imposing controls on low-quality coal imports," said Zhi Shuping, head of the Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine which oversees imports safety. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 14 - France likely a frequent power importer in years to come

For two straight months this winter, France was a net importer of electricity for the first time in five years, a trend that could continue during periods of peak demand no matter who wins the April-May presidential election. France, usually a net exporter of electricity, imported a record 950 gigawatt-hours of power on a net basis in January, the highest level since 1980, as a cold snap increased demand for heating amid a series of prolonged nuclear outages. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 14 - Musk's bold offer of Tesla batteries won't solve Australia's power problems: Russell

Australia is becoming an interesting microcosm on how to, or how not to, transition an economy from being predominantly powered by coal to more climate-friendly alternatives. The dramatic intervention by Tesla Inc Chief Executive Elon Musk last week is just the latest twist in an ongoing saga that pits business, government, farmers, government and environmentalists against each other. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 09 - Coal gets second wind as Australia battles power crisis 

The rise of wind and solar power in Australia was supposed to be the death knell for coal use in the world's biggest exporter of the fossil fuel, but the shunned fuel is finding a new lease of life and may yet attract subsidies to keep the lights on. Growth in electricity demand and a drop in supply since 2014 have strained the Australian grid, triggering outages amid heatwaves and storms. The worst - an eight-hour blackout in South Australia last year - crippled industry for up to two weeks and provoked public outrage. Click here to read full stories.

Mar 02 - Trump poised to lift federal coal ban, other green rules - White House 

U.S. President Donald Trump will target a handful of Obama-era green regulations, including a federal coal mining ban and an initiative forcing states to cut carbon emissions, in an executive order as soon as next week, a White House official told Reuters on Wednesday. Trump and his fellow Republicans who control Congress are seeking to unravel former Democratic President Barack Obama's initiatives to combat global climate change, which they say are costly for U.S. business and have hampered drilling and mining without providing any clear benefits. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 28 - Coal revival means big stock bonuses at bankrupt Peabody

A year ago, Peabody Energy Corp's chief executive was presiding over $2 billion of losses as the world's largest private sector coal miner spiralled into bankruptcy. Now, CEO Glenn Kellow and other top executives stand to reap tens of millions of dollars in stock bonuses under Peabody's bankruptcy exit plan, which sets aside 10 percent of newly minted shares for employees. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 27 - Tepco increases bond sale size to 90 bln yen

Tokyo Electric Power Co (Tepco) said on Monday it has increased the size of its first bond offer since the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster by nearly 30 percent, after investors showed strong interest. The company raised the sale to 90 billion yen ($803 million) from 70 billion yen, Tepco said in a filing on Monday. The company is now selling 40 billion yen of three-year debt and 50 billion yen of five-year bonds. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 24 - North Korea raps old ally China after China's ban on coal 

North Korea issued a rare reproach of China on Thursday saying its main diplomatic backer was "dancing to the tune" of the United States for halting North Korean coal imports because of its nuclear and missile programmes. The North's state-run KCNA news agency did not refer directly to China by name but in an unmistakable censure it accused a "neighbouring country" of going along with North Korea's enemies to "bring down its social system". Click here to read full stories.

Feb 23 - Brazil's Petrobras denies Eletrobras gas for new power plant

State-run oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA has alerted Brazil's electricity sector regulator that it would not supply natural gas for a new thermoelectric power plant under construction in the Amazon region. In a letter to regulator Aneel seen by Reuters, Petrobras said it would not sign a contract with state-led power utility Centrais Eletricas Brasileiras SA, known as Eletrobras, because its subsidiary Amazonas Energia, which is building the plant in Manaus, owes it more than 2.5 billion reais ($814 million) for fuel supplies. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 22 - Power struggle: Australian smelters grapple with electricity uncertainty 

Fed up with unpredictable and often exorbitant electricity prices, Sun Metals CEO Yun Birm Choi plans to invest A$183 million ($140 million) to build a massive solar farm to power his zinc refinery in the Australian outback. The decision by Sun Metals, owned by Korea Zinc Co, to turn to solar comes as Australia grapples with more frequent power failures and extraordinary price surges on its mainly coal-fired wholesale electricity markets. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 20 - China to suspend all imports of coal from North Korea

China will suspend all imports of coal from North Korea starting Feb. 19, the country's commerce ministry said in a notice posted on its website on Saturday, as part of its efforts to implement United Nations sanctions against the country. The Ministry of Commerce said in a short statement that the ban would be effective until Dec. 31. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 17 - China's North Korea import ban the latest gyrating coal policy: Russell

Coal markets could be forgiven for feeling slightly confused about the recent signals coming out of top importer China, with both bullish and bearish developments in evidence. The most obvious bullish news relates mainly to coking coal used in steel-making, and like many announcements in China it's political in nature. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 09 - Indonesia's Bumi targets coal output of 93-94 mln T in 2017 - Director 

Indonesia's biggest coal producer, Bumi Resources, is targeting production of 93 million to 94 million tonnes of coal in 2017, its director, Dileep Srivastava, told Reuters on Thursday. That would be up to 9 percent higher than the 86.5 million tonnes produced in 2016. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 08 - ChinaCoal to divert 9,300 workers to new jobs in capacity cut 

Chinacoal, China's second-largest coal producer, plans to divert around 9,300 coal workers, about 10 percent of its workforce, to new jobs, the company's spokesperson said on Wednesday. Part of a plan to reduce mining capacity by 17 million tonnes a year in 2017, ChinaCoal will offer the coal mine employees training and help them look for jobs with other companies, Jiang Chun, spokesman for ChinaCoal said. Click here to read full stories.

Feb 03 - Coal rule killed by U.S. Congress, others near chopping block

The U.S. Congress moved swiftly on Thursday to undo Obama-era rules on the environment, corruption, labor and guns, with the Senate wiping from the books a rule aimed at reducing water pollution. By a vote of 54-45, the Senate approved a resolution already passed in the House of Representatives to kill the rule aimed at keeping pollutants out of streams in areas near mountain top removal coal-mining sites. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 26 - Rio Tinto sale to Yancoal resets mood for Australian coal mine deals

Chinese-owned Yancoal's $2.45 billion purchase of the Coal & Allied division of Rio Tinto is setting the stage for more big-ticket coal mining acquisitions in Australia, where more than $10 billion in assets are waiting to be sold. Deals stalled last year when coal prices rocketed to nearly five-year highs and miners raised their expectations on bids for their assets, but with coal prices in retreat, deals are more likely to get done, merger and acquisition advisers said. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 25 - Rio Tinto sells coal assets to China's Yancoal for up to $2.45 bln

Rio Tinto Plc has agreed to sell its Australian unit Coal & Allied Industries Ltd to Chinese government-controlled Yancoal Australia Ltd for up to $2.45 billion in cash, it said on Tuesday. Analysts said the price was a good deal for selling off thermal coal assets, which Rio no longer views as core. Rio's share price rose 4 percent in London trade, just above gains of 3.5 percent for the wider sector.  Click here to read full stories.

Jan 23 - Holiday on ice as coal mines get skates on to beat Beijing curbs

Chinese coal miners are so determined to cash in on a window of high prices that many are slashing holiday leave for workers and raising pay through the Lunar New Year celebrations before government introduces limits on output again. Prices in China, the world's biggest coal user, have slipped back 16 percent from their two-year peak of 610 yuan ($88.83) per tonne two months ago, but they are still profitably high after a couple of barren years for miners. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 17 - Europe spot power mixed with French day-ahead up 16 pct (Reuters)
- European prompt power prices were mixed early on Tuesday with French prices up as cold weather spurred demand while wind supply weighed on German prices.
- Day-ahead French baseload was up 16 percent at 124 euros ($131.96) per megawatt hour (MWh) while German prices were down 7 percent at 77.75 euros/MWh.
- Traders said the French system was on high alert and needed a high level of imports.
- A day earlier French electricity grid operator said no power cuts were immediately expected.
- Demand in France is set to rise by 1.4 gigawatts (GW) to 83.4 GW on Wednesday while demand in Germany is seen rising by 0.3 GW to 71.5 GW.

Jan 13 - High Romanian demand prompts power export ban talks (ICIS)
- A reduction or discontinuation of Romanian electricity exports is being considered, the country’s energy ministry confirmed late on Thursday.This measure would only be applied in case of doubts that the system will be able to cover local demand.
- On Tuesday, Romania’s transmission system operator (TSO) Transelectrica reported the highest electricity consumption in the country since 2001, hitting 9730MW in peak hours. Consumption is forecast to remain high over the next week, with levels likely to reach 9400MW during peak hours.
- Earlier in the week, the TSO had notified the ministry of energy and regulator ANRE about an “imminent appearance of a crisis”, the statement said.
- The supply concerns have been a result of severe weather conditions in the region, forecast to hit Romania particularly hard in the period between 17-20 January 2017. Extreme cold has been combined with a record low hydro generation in the county, with the Danube recently hitting its lowest level in recent years at around 1,800 cubic metres per second (cbm/s).
- Danube flows into Romania through the Bazias point stood at 2,250cbm/s on Friday, less than half of the average 4,950cbm/s for January.
- The weather is also likely to impair wind generation in Romania, further limiting production opportunities.
Transelectrica was given the green light to apply certain measures to keep the system safe if necessary.
Those measures would include:
- switching to alternative fuels for electricity production such as oil
- reducing or stopping electricity exports
- imposing consumption limitations on big industrial consumers.
Transelectrica was not able to provide a potential timeline as to when they may need to impose such measures.
- Given Romania’s key position as a net exporter, the whole southeast region may be destabilised if the country imposes export measures, one regional trader said on Friday. “The past week they exported around 1GW-1.5GW an hour. If they begin cutting exports, it’s going to have a huge impact on every country south of Hungary and Romania,” he said.
- Other countries in southeast Europe, such as Greece and Bulgaria both imposed export bans this week to guarantee the security of their systems.

Jan 10 - Top Australia coal state hits record exports for third straight year 

Coal exports from Australia's Queensland state, one of the world's biggest suppliers to China, hit record levels for the third year in a row in 2016, data released on Tuesday showed.The state's coal shipments, representing around 60 percent of Australia's coal exports, reached 221 million tonnes last year, eclipsing 2015's record by 1 million tonnes, according to the Queensland Resources Council lobby group. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 09 - China top coal province sets out consolidation plan

China's Shanxi province, the country's top coal producer, plans to cap output and consolidate the industry around big producers over the next four years in a bid to boost effiency, according to a blueprint by the provincial government. Major producers will be set up with a separate focus on thermal coal, coking coal and anthracite, while smaller producers will be merged into larger ones, the local authority said on its official website. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 06 - Coal India's 2017/18 production seen at 660 mln tonnes -coal secretary

State-owned Coal India Ltd, the world's largest coal miner, is expected to raise its production to 660 million tonnes in 2017/18 fiscal year, the coal secretary said on Friday.The miner is expected to achieve its 2016/17 production target of 575 million tonnes and aims to raise output to 1 billion tonnes by 2020, Susheel Kumar told television news channel CNBC-TV18 in an interview. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 06 - China's miners gamble on spot coal despite Beijing pressure 

China's top coal miners have mostly resisted pressure from Beijing to sign long-term fixed-price deals this year, in a bet that there's more money to be made in the spot market before government efforts to ease a supply crunch take effect.Miners including two of the nation's largest, China Coal and Shenhua, have signed deals with utilities, the top consumers of thermal coal, for only about 40 percent of their 2017 output at discounts to the spot market, according to four sources familiar with the contracts. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 05 - France ready to save nuclear group Areva whoever wins presidency

A government-led rescue of French nuclear group Areva and the wider atomic energy industry may cost the state as much as 10 billion euros, but political support is almost certain whoever wins the presidential election in May. While taxpayers will ultimately pick up the huge bill, the main election contenders - from the Socialists and conservatives to the far-right National Front - broadly back the bailout, which involves splitting up Areva. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 04 - Smog-hit Beijing slapped with top "fog" alert for second day

The Chinese capital issued its highest red fog alert for a second day on Wednesday, keeping highways closed in and around the city which is already under a smog alert after weeks of choking winter pollution. China's weather bureau warned of visibility of less than 50 metres in some areas, leading many airports to cancel flights. Click here to read full stories.

Jan 03 - Indian coal mine death toll rises to 16, some still trapped 

The death toll in an Indian coal mine collapse rose to 16 on Saturday and could rise further, officials said, as some people are still feared trapped at a coalfield run by state-owned Coal India Limited.The accident occurred in Jharkhand state on Thursday evening at the Lalmatia mine, one of the country's largest, which is owned by Eastern Coalfields Limited (ECL). Click here to read full stories.

Dec 29 - Our best wishes for a serene (and decisively less turbulent) New Year 2017 to all friends, tweeps, readers, followers and clients.

Dec 23 - France inaugurates world’s first solar highway (AFP)
  France on Thursday inaugurated the world’s first “solar highway”, a road paved with solar panels providing enough energy to power the street lights of the small Normandy town of Tourouvre. The one-kilometre (half-mile) “Wattway” covered with 2,800 square metres (30,000 square feet) of resin-coated solar panels was hooked up to the local power grid as environment minister Segolene Royal looked on.
  “This new use of solar energy takes advantage of large swathes of road infrastructure already in use... to produce electricity without taking up new real estate,” Royal said in a statement.
  The minister announced a four-year “plan for the national deployment of solar highways” with initial projects in western Brittany and southern Marseille.
  An average of 2,000 cars use the road in Tourouvre each day, testing the resistance of the panels for the project carried out by French civil engineering firm Colas, a subsidiary of construction giant Bouygues.
  The idea, which is also under exploration in Germany, the Netherlands and the US, is that roadways are occupied by cars only around 20% of the time, providing vast expanses of surface to soak up the sun’s rays.
  Colas says that in theory France could become energy independent by paving only a quarter of its million kilometres of roads with solar panels.
  Sceptics are waiting to see whether the panels can withstand the ravages of time and weather, as well as the beating they will take from big trucks.
  Solar panels installed on a 70-metre stretch of a cycling lane north of Amsterdam experienced some damage last winter but the problem has been resolved, the project’s company TNO said.
  The Wattway project, which has received a state subsidy of five million euros (dollars), began with four pilot sites around France, in parking lots or in front of public buildings, on much smaller surfaces of between 50 and 100 square metres each.
  One drawback of the system is that solar panels are more effective when angled towards the sun, typically on slanted rooftops, than when they are laid flat.
  And the cost question is far from being resolved. Each kilowatt-peak—the unit of measure for solar energy—generated by Wattway currently costs €17, compared with €1.30 for a major rooftop installation.
  But Colas hopes to make the cost competitive by 2020, noting that the cost of producing solar energy decreased by 60% between 2009 and 2015 according to a French renewable energy association, SER.

Dec 23 - China's Nov coal imports from Indonesia surge, Australia slips 

Chinese imports of coal from Indonesia surged 160 percent in November from a year earlier, in line with rising shipments to meet a domestic shortfall, but imports from Australia dipped 10 percent.Imports from Indonesia jumped to 5.15 million tonnes, still slightly below the 5.6 million tonnes shipped in from Austrlaia, customs data showed. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 23 - China's name and shame campaign fails to deter polluters 

China has publicly named more than 20 enterprises it says broke environmental rules during this week’s outbreak of hazardous smog in the country's north, its latest attempt to bring lawbreaking firms to account by shaming them.The Ministry of Environmental Protection (MEP) accused steel and paper mills, cement plants, power generators and chemical producers of a range of offences, including ignoring output suspensions, "maliciously" evading government inspections and falsifying production data. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 21 - China's steps to fight rampant pollution hits Asian coal demand 

Asian thermal coal prices are set to come under pressure as a mild December in the Northern Hemisphere caps heating demand and China shuts power stations, factories, and even ports in a desperate fight against rampant smog.Coal markets had some of the steepest price rises on record earlier this year, with Australian Newcastle cargo prices gaining almost two-thirds within two months to over $114 per tonne by the start of November after Chinese authorities capped domestic coal mining, sending utilities scrambling for imports. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 14 - China coal output trend points to lower seaborne prices: Russell 

When it comes to China's coal production, is it more important that output in November recorded yet another decline year-on-year, or that it rose for a second straight month? The inclination is often to take the number and interpret it in the way that best suits the narrative you wish to tell. If you want to be bullish on coal prices, the 5.1 percent decline in domestic coal production to 308.1 million tonnes in November from the same month in 2015 would be your focus. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 12 - China puts temporary ban on North Korean coal imports 

China's Commerce Ministry said it will put a temporary ban on imports of North Korean coal as part of a U.N. Security Council resolution meant to deter Pyongyang from pursuing its nuclear weapons programme. The 15-member Security Council late last month put new sanctions on North Korea aimed at cutting its annual export revenue by a quarter after it carried out its fifth and largest nuclear test so far in September. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 09 - China's top coal province to shut 49 mln T a year in capacity by 2020 

China's biggest coal-producing province Shanxi pledged to eliminate 49 million tonnes a year in capacity by shutting 39 mines over the next five years, according to documents posted on the website of the province's development and reform commission. The plan aims to replace outdated capacity with more advanced mines without increasing output. Shanxi produced nearly 1 billion tonnes of coal in 2015, accounting for about a quarter of China's total coal capacity. The local government has vowed to cut its annual coal capacity by a total of 110 million tonnes by 2020. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 05 - China coal mine disaster kills 32 - Xinhua 

The death toll from a northern Chinese coal mine disaster rose to 32 on Sunday, state media reported, the latest accident in a country with a poor record of industrial safety. The blast took place on Saturday in a small mine in the Inner Mongolia region, next to Mongolia, Xinhua news agency said. A total of 181 workers were initially trapped underground and 149 of them were rescued, Xinhua said. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 05 - Peabody wants to repay term loan early thanks to improving coal prices 

U.S. coal producer Peabody Energy Corp  said it would seek court approval to repay a $500 million term loan ahead of schedule because it has enough cash to operate in bankruptcy thanks to a rise in coal prices. Peabody obtained an $800 million debtor-in-possession or DIP financing from both secured and unsecured creditors when it joined other large U.S. coal producers in bankruptcy in April, hit by a drop in coal prices. Click here to read full stories.

Dec 02 - China orders coal mines to conduct safety overhaul 

China has ordered all of the country's coal mines to conduct a safety overhaul in the past month, the official Xinhua news agency reported on Friday, citing the deputy director of the country's work safety watchdog. Mines should not be operating over capacity and miners should not be asked to work overtime as mines pushed to the limits are prone to accidents, Song Yuanming, deputy director of the State Administration of Coal Mine Safety, said at an annual coal trade summit in Hebei province, Xinhua reported.Click here to read full stories.

Dec 01 - Mongolia surge helps lift China Oct coal imports - customs 

China's imports of coal from Mongolia more than tripled in October from the same month a year before, customs data showed, reflecting tight supply in the domestic market that stoked much bigger shipments from foreign producers to meet demand.Output from domestic miners has been shrinking as a result of China's campaign to cut back overcapacity in its coal industry. That helped overall coal imports last month climb 55 percent to 21.58 million tonnes - a number likely to add urgency to a new push by Beijing calling on miners to raise output. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 23 - Trump keeping 'open mind' on pulling out of climate accord 

U.S. President-elect Donald Trump said on Tuesday he was keeping an open mind on whether to pull out of a landmark international accord to fight climate change, in a softening of his stance toward global warming. Trump told the New York Times in an interview that he thinks there is "some connectivity" between human activity and global warming, despite previously describing climate change as a hoax.

Nov 22 - Electricity cross-border flows: Squeezed French supply margins remain top concern (ICIS)
  France remained the focal point of the development of cross-border physical flows across Europe in October, extending a pattern that has been the theme of the second half of 2016. Further revisions to the availability of the country’s nuclear fleet, coupled with sub-average temperatures, resulted in France being one of the smallest net exporters in the region. Early flows and trading data suggest the trend will once again continue into November.
  In other parts of Europe, markets faced increasing pressure from falling temperatures while some plant outages affected countries such as Switzerland and the UK. However their impact on the movement of power across borders was overshadowed by the developments in France. This was reflected in European spot prices with France frequently recording the highest values.

French net flows to reverse?
  France was barely a net exporter in October with net outbound flows falling to their lowest level this year with 0.7GW/hour. This was a significant monthly fall of 65% and a yearly decline of 81%.
  Unravelling nuclear availability heaped the pressure on France. On the final day of October nuclear availability reached a historic low of 41.4GW, or 65% of total capacity. Supply problems were also compounded by poor hydro availability while the demand-side was boosted by dropping temperatures. At present there are no signs that these trends will reverse significantly in the near term and this may lead to France switching to being net importer across all borders more consistently.
  Empowered by the deteriorating margins, France imported power from Germany and Spain which reversed the direction of flows month on month. This is the first time this year that France has imported from both countries on a monthly basis.
  A notable exception was along the French-Swiss border where France managed to increase net exports despite its own supply concerns. This was because nuclear availability in Switzerland was also severely restricted. Outages meant that available nuclear capacity was just above 50% for most of the month (see EDEM 17 October 2016). Hydropower generation and higher import volumes will be needed to overcome the subsequent shortfalls.
  Elsewhere the other large net exporters, Germany and the Czech Republic, recorded an uptick in outbound flows. Germany was aided by stronger thermal generation and higher wind output while returning nuclear capacity supported Czech margins.

Net importers demand more
  The net exporters of southern and southeastern Europe drew in more power from their northwestern neighbours at the start of the winter period.
  Italy, the largest net importer of the region, saw net imports more than double month on month to 3.1GW/hour. Squeezed margins in northern Italy resulted in comparatively higher prices when compared to the country’s northern neighbours and resulted in higher imports. Internal restrictions meant that this could easily be offset by drawing power from southern Italy.
  Meanwhile Hungarian net inbound flows climbed 17% month on month to 1.4GW/hour. Nuclear capacity was reduced from 17 October following a 500MW outage to the Paks plant.

Nov 22 - Will coal price retreat be a Dunkirk or Stalingrad?: Russell 

It may be a tad early to call a peak in the price of thermal coal in top-consuming region Asia, but at the very least the momentum seems to have been lost from a commodity that has surged some 130 percent in the past 10 months. If coal prices have already peaked, the question is which of the World War II battles of Dunkirk or Stalingrad will the retreat most resemble. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 22 - Canada speeds up plan to phase out coal power, targets 2030 

Canada will speed up plans to virtually eliminate traditional coal-fired electricity by 2030, the government said on Monday, a stance contrasting sharply with that of U.S. President-elect Donald Trump, who has pledged to revive the sector. Canada's Liberal government ran on a platform to do more for the environment. Its coal-cutting plan would help it meet the emissions reduction targets of the Paris agreement, which Parliament ratified last month.  Click here to read full stories.

Nov 21 - Tidal power developers bet on sea change in Indonesia renewables sector 

A well-connected Indonesian marine renewable energy company and OpenHydro, a unit of French state-owned naval defence company DCNS, aim to be the first to plug into the vast untapped tidal energy potential of the world's biggest archipelago. Renewables have so far played little part in Indonesia's power sector, despite the country sitting on the world's biggest geothermal reserves and being bathed in sunshine, crowded out by an abundance of cheap coal and bureaucratic bottlenecks. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 17 - Coal: After the surge, how low can it go? 

A wave that has lifted some coal prices to more than double in the last six months may be about to ebb away, turned back by China's move to loosen the restrictions on domestic mining that first triggered the fuel's rise. Australian Newcastle cargo prices, Asia's benchmark, have fallen 7.8 percent in November already, slipping to $105.75 per tonne from almost $115 at the start of the month, their highest since 2012. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 16 - Wesfarmers seeks coal exit in sellers' market as prices soar 

Australian conglomerate Wesfarmers Ltd  is weighing a sale of its coal mines following an unexpected price surge that is turning coal into one of this year's hottest commodities. "Wesfarmers is continuing to consider a broad range of options, from operational to divestment initiatives, including recently seeking expressions of interest from external parties who may want to acquire the coal assets," it said in a statement. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 14 - China coal output extends decline despite govt call to reopen mines 

China's October coal output fell 12 percent compared with a year earlier, data showed on Monday, even after the government gave operators the go-ahead to ramp up output and reopen mines in a bid to top up power producers' inventories ahead of winter. With the restart of shuttered mines taking time to kick in, the drop highlights concerns about tight supplies in the world's top consumer and producer of the fossil fuel, a factor that has fuelled a nearly year-long rally in thermal coal prices. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 11 - China coal fumble casts doubt on its global commodities pricing goal 

Unprecedented steps by Beijing to snuff out a months-long rally in coal prices are casting fresh doubts on China's drive to become a global price-setting hub for commodities worth trillions of dollars. The world's top consumer of many raw materials has been pushing to boost its influence on pricing of everything from iron ore to oil, mainly through steps such as promoting Chinese futures contracts as regional or global benchmarks. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 09 - Under govt pressure, China's top coal miners to cut long-term prices 

China's state economic planner said two of the nation's top coal mines signed long-term supply contracts with utilities at a quarter below current spot market rates, as the government ramps up its efforts to cool the red-hot market. Shenhua Energy Co and ChinaCoal Energy Co agreed to sell their coal at 535 yuan ($79) per tonne under long-term deals which start as soon as Dec. 1, Xu Kunlin, vice secretary general of the National Development & Reform Commission (NDRC), said at a briefing on Wednesday.

Nov 08 - French nuclear crunch causes European CCGT gas demand surge (ICIS)
- Demand for gas in power generation at many key European gas hubs surged in October, in response to nuclear supply problems in France and favourable clean spark spreads. This was a key factor in pushing Day-ahead contracts at many European gas hubs around 40% higher month on month.
- The main factor behind gas-fired generation demand rocketing in October was a series of outages at French nuclear generation facilities, which are the country’s dominant source for electricity. These supply concerns led to spikes in many European wholesale power markets.
- Looking ahead, the French Nuclear Safety Authority has said that four reactors will be taken offline between mid-December and mid-January, meaning nuclear availability will be restricted during a key demand period. A fifth reactor has already been taken offline.
- The supply crunch has impacted not only France, but neighbouring markets, and caused gas-fired generation in surrounding countries to ramp up in order to fill the supply gap.
- The combined-cycle gas turbine (CCGT) demand increase was a key factor in higher Day-ahead contracts at many European gas hubs, including the British NBP, Dutch TTF and French PEG Nord. Most Day-ahead contracts leapt by around 40% in October, with the TTF surging from €12.56/MWh on 3 October to €16.925/MWh on 28 October.
- Other factors contributing to the price rises included lower than normal temperatures across much of northern Europe, low send-out from British LNG terminals and uncertainty over British gas storage.

Nov 08 - China's rising coal generation is both a right and wrong step: Russell 

China's future use of polluting coal for electricity shows the difficulty of dealing with news that presents multiple facts, thus allowing some to be highlighted over others. The National Energy Administration (NEA) announced on Monday its latest five-year plan for China's power market, and the anticipated mix of generation capacity. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 07 - China to cap coal at 55 pct of total power output by 2020 - NEA

China aims to cap coal-fired power capacity at 1,100 gigawatts by 2020, higher than the current ceiling but accounting for less of the country's total power supply as the top global energy market seeks to increase the use of cleaner renewable fuels. Announcing its five-year plan for the power industry, the National Energy Administration (NEA) on Monday said China aimed to have 2,000 gigawatts of electricity generating capacity by 2020, of which at least 320 gigawatts would come from solar and wind power and 110 gigawatts from natural gas.

Nov 04 - Mitsubishi CFO says expects a big drop in coking coal prices 

Japan's Mitsubishi Corp  sees the recent surge in coking coal prices as temporary and expects to see a big drop, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Kazuyuki Masu said on Friday. "It's abnormal to see such a spike. If the coal prices could surge this much in a short period, they could drop the same way," he told a news conference. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 04 - Glencore cleared to extend life of Australian coal mine to 2031 

Glencore Plc  said on Friday it has won approval from the New South Wales state government to extend the life of its Mount Owen coal complex in Australia by 12 years to 2031. The complex, which includes the Mount Owen and Glendell mines, produced 8.07 million tonnes of saleable thermal coal for power stations and semi-soft coking coal for steel mills last year. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 04 - Japan's beleaguered utilities seek salvation in trading 

Forced into action by falling customers due to market liberalization and a shrinking population, Japan's utilities are ditching old long-term coal and gas supply contracts in favour of more short-term, opportunistic trading. The move represents a sea change for the traditionally risk averse utilities as they seek to cut costs, but will make life harder for liquefied natural gas (LNG) producers who have relied on long-term sales to underwrite costly new projects and expansions. Click here to read full stories.

Nov 03 - France's Engie to shut Australia's dirtiest power plant 

France's Engie said it will close Australia's dirtiest coal-fired power station in March 2017 as further investments in the ageing Hazelwood plant cannot be justified, and will look to sell two other Australian power plants. The long-anticipated move to close Hazelwood is the latest in a string of closures of coal-fired power stations in Australia amid a push toward cleaner energy and a drop in demand that has driven down electricity prices.Click here to read full stories.

Nov 02 - As first cold snap of winter grips China, utilities face coal crunch 

As the first major cold snap of the winter grips northern China this week, utilities are desperately trying to overcome a shortage of the coal they need to produce power as customers crank up heating to fight the chill. With coal inventories languishing below 20 days of use, well under the five-year average, power companies will be forced to stick with their record pace of imports for the rest of the year, stoking an unprecedented rally that has seen international prices more than double in 2016.

Nov 02 - China's coal imports surge again, but how long can the party last?: Russell 

China's imports of coal from the seaborne market surged again in October, thereby justifying the jump in prices but also raising questions as to how much more of the fuel the world's top buyer can suck in.Seaborne coal imports were 20.03 million tonnes for October, according to vessel-tracking and port data compiled by Thomson Reuters Supply Chain and Commodity Forecasts.

Nov 01 - Glencore to restart Australia coal mine as prices surge 

Glencore said on Tuesday it would restart a coking coal mine in southeastern Australia that was shuttered more than two years ago, with a resurgence in prices for the commodity breathing new life into the sector. Less than a year after the coal industry was declared to be in terminal decline, markets for coal used to generate power and make steel have surged - boosted by moves in China to mine less of its own coal and import more. Click here to read full stories.