Antinuclear

Australian news, and some related international items

Xstrata mining company, like its close friend Glencore, out to wreck renewable energy in Australia

The mining giant Xstrata is now behaving just like the  company that is the world’s most ruthless, secretive and lacking in integrity – Glencore.

This is hardly surprising, as the two companies  are as thick as thieves, and tipped to merger very soon. or might have already merged.  Glencore’s CEO, South African -born Ivan Glasenberg, took the trouble to become an Australian citizen. Glencore very recently listed as a public company. Both actions designed to further Glencore’s interest in Australia, as Glencore bought into Xstrata Australia.

It’s a dead shame that Australian governments can lie down and let these rapacious corporations, known. especially in Glencore’s case, for illegal activities and environmental degradation –  walk all over efforts to get renewable energy happening in this country.

 

Given the government’s description of CopperString [ involving  renewable energyplan]as a “once in a generation opportunity,” it now seems extraordinary that it should agree with the proposal by Sims, a noted economic rationalist, to allow “the market” – effectively Xstrata – to decide the fate of the project….

Xstrata gas deal sinks renewables hubClimate Spectator Giles Parkinson, 7 oct 11,  Hopes of building one of Australia’s largest renewable energy hubs in north Queensland appear to have been dashed after the Swiss-based global mining giant Xstrata signed a deal instead with AGL Energy to build a gas-fired power station in Mt Isa.

Xstrata had been mulling three strategies to ensure future energy supply for its Mt Isa mining operations: the extension of the current sole supplier, the gas-fired Mica power station (an idea it dumped a while ago); go for another gas-fired station; or participate in the CopperString project that would link Mt Isa with the grid at Townsville via a 1000km transmission line, and unlock a series of renewable energy projects, including wind, solar, biomass and geothermal found in between….

The decision by one of its major customers almost certainly signals the end of CopperString, which would have cost at least $1.5 billion, but was backed by state and federal funding, and of a multi-billion dollar renewable plan, including the $1.5 billion, 750MW Kennedy wind farm – which would have been the nation’s largest – and a host of other renewable projects. Among them were several solar thermal projects; another wind farm and solar plant at Mt Isa; a 400MW biodiesel and biomass plant using kapla trees being considered by another CSIRO spin-off called PhytoFuel; a 100MW hydro project, and a biomass project proposed by Samsung; and several geothermal prospects. In all, up to 3000MW of renewable projects were envisaged….
It also means that Queensland will likely struggle to meet its renewable energy target, as CopperString would have unlocked its best renewable resources. As it is, the state has only 12MW wind farm in the south and a single turbine on Thursday Island to show for its renewable efforts, apart from a whole host of solar PV on rooftops and the two largest solar thermal projects, including the Solar Dawn flagships project, that are on the drawing board….
Given the government’s description of CopperString as a “once in a generation opportunity,” it now seems extraordinary that it should agree with the proposal by Sims, a noted economic rationalist, to allow “the market” – effectively Xstrata – to decide the fate of the project….
http://www.climatespectator.com.au/commentary/xstrata-gas-deal-sinks-renewables-hub

October 7, 2011 - Posted by | energy, Queensland

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