19/01/2021 - 23:05

Private equity swoops on LNG hopeful

19/01/2021 - 23:05

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A Miami-based private equity firm has acquired the business developing an LNG mine fuel hub at Mt Magnet, promising a Port Hedland project next.

Private equity swoops on LNG hopeful
WA's domestic gas network is key for energy distribution. Photo: APA

A Miami-based private equity firm has acquired the business developing an LNG mine fuel hub at Mt Magnet, promising a Port Hedland project next.

Clean Energy Fuels Australia recently commenced work on a $100 million facility in Mt Magnet to liquefy gas for trucking to remote mine sites, and the company secured approval under new streamlined laws in November.

The plant could produce up to 100,000 tonnes of LNG annually, with production starting in the third quarter of this year.

Silver Lakes Resources’ Deflector Gold Mine was the plant's inaugral customer, and the project was backed by US outfit I Squared Capital.

Today, the private equity firm today announced it will acquire Clean Energy Fuels and stump up a further $500 million for low carbon and renewable projects.

That would include a further LNG fuel hub in the Pilbara, according to Clean Energy Fuels.

Clean Energy Fuels will develop what it called an Energy Transition Platform, which would provide LNG for mining vehicles and redeployable solar.

“The Energy Transition Platform will offer an integrated solution to remote mining customers to meet their evolving energy needs,” the company said in a release. 

“This will include end-to-end logistics for Liquefied Natural Gas for power generation, innovative solutions for utilising LNG in place of diesel for heavy mine haul vehicles, re-deployable solar solutions which can adapt with the unique requirements of mining operations with shorter mine lives, and the transition towards green hydrogen.”

General manager Romano Bernhard said Clean Energy Fuels had secured a site in Port Hedland, which will serve as its second LNG Hub.

"Across these hubs, CEFA aims to build modular and flexible LNG liquefaction plants with cumulative capacity of up to 200,000 tonnes per annum,"Mr Bernhard said.

"CEFA estimates that over 25 years of operation, these projects could displace around 6 billion litres of imported diesel with domestically sourced natural gas and reduce customers’ CO2 emissions by over 4 million tonnes.”

I Squared claimed $14 billion of assets under management as at September, it was reported.

Clean Energy Fuels will be competing with existing LNG minesite supplier Evol LNG, which has a production facility in Kwinana.

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