Statkraft, the leading European provider of market access services, has announced a major 15-year contract with the distributed energy company AMP Clean Energy, to optimise and trade its Urban Reserve portfolio of flexible natural gas peaking plants.
The 15-year agreement will see Statkraft optimise the plants totalling up to 175MW capacity for the portfolio into the day ahead, and intraday wholesale markets and the Balancing Market, while also providing AMP Clean Energy with a minimum income guarantee to support financing.
The first plant to go live is Urban Reserve’s 2.5MW Collins Power site in Romney Warren – which also benefits from being part of a UK Power Networks flexibility contract – with the plans for the first 80MW of the portfolio to be commissioned over the next eight months.
Commenting on the agreement Brian Lonn, Head of UK Flexibility at Statkraft, said:
“The Urban Reserve plants provide us with a unique optimisation opportunity, as smaller scale and distributed transitional technologies like natural gas engines provide the reliability and flexibility required to keep the lights on when there’s not enough wind or sun.”
Unique in their size and location – typically 2-4MW projects situated in urban and commercial areas – the Urban Reserve plants will provide complementary assets to Statkraft’s established renewables portfolio.
“These plants are crucial to delivering the flexible generation capacity the UK needs to support the growth of renewables and the net zero ambition, while also ensuring security of supply until mass storage becomes a viable option. Through being located close to demand centres they also provide a benefit to the distribution network operators through relieving congestion and allowing for the deferral of costly grid reinforcement projects. The truly distributed nature of this portfolio pairs very well with the advanced algorithmic optimisation capabilities of Statkraft’s Unity trading platform. We look forward to working with the Urban Reserve team to optimise these assets in the market and support the UK’s low carbon transition” added Lonn.
Mark Tarry, Managing Director at Urban Reserve, comments: “This is a very exciting partnership with Statkraft, which has industry-leading trading capabilities and an innovative approach to future energy markets. Statkraft’s ability to optimise assets alongside its renewable portfolio is world-leading, and means it has a strong overview of the intermittency of the renewables market. As a result, it can make the most of assets like Urban Reserve, which are specifically designed to provide back-up power when the wind doesn’t blow, or the sun doesn’t shine.”
This partnership marks the next phase in the growth of the Urban Reserve portfolio, which has gained planning for 29 flexible electricity facilities over the last 18 months, with 19 projects representing 80 MW in the delivery phase, with a further 45 MW planned, which would take the total to 125 MW of operational projects during the course of 2021.
The Urban Reserve portfolio joins ca. 500MW of third-party distributed flexible generation and battery storage capacity which Statkraft already optimises alongside its nearly 4,000 MW pre-dominantly third-party renewable generation portfolio in the UK. Statkraft’s leading trading platform integrates intermittent renewable generation and flexible assets in order to support customers and the whole market with the ‘renewables revolution’. Statkraft’s platform dynamically trades flexible assets into all available short-term energy markets, allowing the customer to maximise value.