News in brief

Power prices spiked

The electricity regulator said it would not take any immediate action to curb price `spikes’ in the electricity pool – which led to bitter complaints from big industrial users in the first quarter of the year. The number of spikes fell from 343 between January and 18 March to 14 in the following seven weeks, after threats of draconian action.

Airbus engines

Rolls-Royce has won up to $300m (£183m) of orders for Airbus A320s, plus 25 options and 25 purchase rights. The A320’s V2500 engines will be supplied by International Aero Engine, which Rolls-Royce and Pratt & Whitney have a share in.

North Sea deal

Weir group has won a £7.5m contract from Kvaerner Oil & Gas and Texaco to supply 15 pumps for Texaco’s Captain expansion project in the UK North Sea. The 12 pumps and three spares will all be manufactured at Weir’s Glasgow factory.

The price of wind

UK wind power received £200m in subsidies up to February this year, Energy Minister John Battle told MPs earlier this month.

Bring and buy

ICI is to sell its ceramic fibres business to J&J Dyson and buy Dyson’s catalyst business. Each business has a £7m turnover. The deal, which will strengthen ICI’s Synetix catalyst business, includes J&J Dyson’s plant in Durham.

Fine for fire

BP Amoco has been fined £20,000 in the Aberdeen Sheriff’s Court over a fire on its Bruce platform that injured two workers. BP pleaded guilty to a breach of health & safety laws.

No contamination

A study into UK radioactive materials transportation by Nukem found no evidence of ground contamination at railway sidings used by trains carrying irradiated nuclear fuel.