PARIS, Aug 23 (Reuters) - European spot electricity prices for day-ahead delivery diverged on Wednesday as higher output from German wind turbines weighed on the prompt price, while firm demand, falling renewables and tight nuclear supply, supported the French market.
* The benchmark German day-ahead baseload contract for Thursday delivery fell 4.05 percent or 1.5 euros to 35.50 euros ($41.83) per megawatt-hour (MWh).
* The equivalent French contract gained 0.64 cents or 1.79 percent to 37 euros/MWh.
* German wind power production is expected to rise by 5.4 gigawatts (GW) day-on-day on Thursday to 7.3 GW, according to Thomson Reuters data. Solar production, however, will slip by 1.5 GW to 6.1 GW.
* In France, wind generation will fall by 1.1 GW to 1.2 GW, while power from Solar panels will fall by 230 megawatts (MW), the data showed.
* Demand will rise by 790 MW to 68.3 GW in Germany, and by 640 MW to 45.3 GW in France.
* Nuclear power availability, which accounts for over 75 percent of French electricity needs, rose to 71.5 percent of capacity on Wednesday from 69.49 percent the previous day following the restart of EDF’s 1,300 MW St. Alban 2 reactor.
* However, its 1,500 MW Civaux 2 reactor will go offline on Thursday for a planned maintenance outage until Sunday.
* Along the forward power curve, the contracts posted slight gains, supported by carbon and coal, amid ongoing market concern over French nuclear supply in the coming winter after nuclear regulator ASN prompted reviews into components at EDF reactors made by Areva’s Creusot.
* The German Cal ‘18 baseload power contract reached a day high of 33 euros/MWh, gaining 5 cents from the previous day’s close.
* The French year-ahead power contract added 25 cents, or 0.64 percent, to 39.50 euros/MWh.
* Coal cif Europe 2018 was flat $77.50 a tonne. December 2017 expiry EU carbon allowances were up 0.87 percent at 5.83 euros a tonne.
* In eastern Europe, Czech spot for Thursday delivery fell 2.72 percent to 35.80 euros, while year-ahead power was untraded with a bid/ask price of 33.40/33.55 euros/MWh. ($1 = 0.8487 euros) (Reporting by Bate Felix, editing by David Evans)