According to The Australian Financial Review, Canadian pension fund OMERS has added a substantial renewable energy investment to its Australian investment portfolio, agreeing terms to acquire a 49 per cent of FRV Australia.
It is understood OMERS has agreed to invest hundreds of millions of dollars into FRV Australia’s solar farms, its pipeline projects and operating business.
FRV Australia has solar farms with about 550MW operating or under construction. Its operating solar farms include Moree in NSW, where output is promised to Origin Energy for the next decade, and Queensland-based Lilyvale (Ergon Energy, 10 years) and Goonumbla (SnowyHydro, 15 years).
According to The Australian Financial Review, ASX-listed property players have collected a bevy of gongs in the annual Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark rankings, as Australia faces increased scrutiny on its green credentials ahead of COP-26.
Among them, Vicinity Centres has been named regional sector leader for listed retail centres in Oceania and third globally in the GRESB rankings, a well-regarded global green ratings system for the property sector.
The mall owner, which has a target of net zero carbon emissions by 2030 for common areas of its wholly owned retail assets, has improved its energy efficiency by 23 per cent, cut emissions by 44 per cent and reduced water usage by 33 per cent over the past five years.
According to The Australian Financial Review, soaring international gas prices have triggered a near 30-fold spike in the value of a single spot cargo ship of LNG to more than $US205 million ($281.8 million) in a price surge that delivers a windfall to gas producers but threatens to derail the global economic recovery.
The 40 per cent surge in Asian benchmark LNG prices to more than $US56 per million British thermal units, while shortlived, has sent shockwaves through the global gas market, given the cold Northern Hemisphere winter has yet to kick in.
According to The Australian Financial Review, the mining industry, which has long had to fend off attacks from the green end of town, is now embracing and accepting that it has to clean up its act, with renewables on its to-do lists.
And it is not paying just lip service to ESG and sustainability; the companies know that activist shareholders and financial institutions are running scared of funding projects that do not fit into the net zero 2050 playbook.
That “green” iron ore company, Macarthur Minerals, recently said it was setting its sights on using renewables for up to 90 per cent of stationary energy needs at its proposed Lake Giles magnetite mine north-west of Kalgoorlie. Starting at 40 per cent renewables (from solar and wind) at the beginning of operations, the company says that could be ramped up to 90 per cent down the track (the gaps filled by natural gas).
According to The Nikkei Asia, Mitsui plans to invest more than 100 billion yen (US$ 899 million) to build a production plant for so-called "blue ammonia," which does not emit carbon dioxide when burned. The plant, which is to go up in Western Australia, will have the capacity to ship 1 million tons of the fuel to Japan annually.
CO2 generated during production is to be stored in a waste gas field near the factory.
Mitsui & Co. will build the plant near a gas field in which it holds a 50% stake. It will use gas from that field to produce ammonia, which will be exported to Japan and supplied to domestic electric power companies in 2028.
It will collaborate with Wesfarmers, an Australian conglomerate that already operates an ammonia plant in Western Australia, for production. In addition, it will collaborate with the Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation on CO2 storage. Memorandums of understanding have been signed with both companies.
According to The Australian Financial Review, prices for Australian thermal coal have surged to a record high and futures prices suggest the rally could continue in the months ahead, adding pressure to the energy price crunch that is already hurting European and Asian consumers.
Top quality coal from New South Wales was priced at $US195.75 per tonne by GlobalCoal on the night on 28th September, eclipsing the previous record of $US195.23 per tonne which had stood since July 2008.
According to The Australian Financial Review, an additional $150 million will be provided to seven the number of “hydrogen hubs” being developed across regional Australia under the federal government’s $1.2 billion hydrogen energy push.
The government wants Australia to become a global player in hydrogen production and exports by 2030 and is touting the hubs as drivers of regional jobs and prosperity.
Seven prospective locations have been identified: Bell Bay (TAS), Darwin (NT), Eyre Peninsula (SA), Gladstone (QLD), Latrobe Valley (VIC), Hunter Valley (NSW), and Pilbara (WA).
The $150 million brings total grant funding available to $464 million, with project consortia able to bid for grants of up to $3 million for feasibility and design work, and grants of up to $70 million to help with the roll-out of projects.
According to the statement from ENEOS Corporation, ENEOS Corporation announces that it has concluded a memorandum with Fortescue Future Industries to conduct a study on a potential business collaboration for the development of a CO2-free hydrogen supply chain between Japan and Australia.
In anticipation of a hydrogen-oriented society toward decarbonization, ENEOS is striving to develop a CO2-free hydrogen supply chain in Japan and overseas. Outside Japan, the wide range of alliances in Australia, Middle East and Asia are being utilized to implement verification for the realization of a large-scale supply of cost-competitive hydrogen.
According to the statement from Iwatani Corporation, four Japanese companies, Iwatani Corporation, Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Kansai Electric Power, and Marubeni Corporation have come to an agreement and signed a memorandum of understanding with two energy infrastructure companies in Australia, Stanwell Corporation and APT Management Services to jointly implement a feasibility study of the Central Queensland Hydrogen Project.
This project will produce hydrogen on a large scale using renewable energy, liquefy it at the Port of Gladstone, Queensland, Australia, and then export the liquefied hydrogen to Japan.
According to The Australian Financial Review, US tech giant Microsoft has acquired Brisbane-based video editing software start-up Clipchamp, which was founded by a group of former SAP employees in 2013, in a deal that will see its founders move to work for its Microsoft 365 division.
Clipchamp makes simple-to-use video editing software, reminiscent of Canva’s document design tools, and had attracted $14.2 million in external funding, with Steve Baxter’s Transition Level Investments and associated investment syndicate TEN13 the local investors likely to be breaking open the champagne.
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