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Maersk invests in bio-methanol startup WasteFuel

Three weeks after the announcement of an e-methanol sourcing agreement in Europe (earlier post), A.P. Moller – Maersk has invested in California-based…

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This article was originally published by Green Car Congress

Three weeks after the announcement of an e-methanol sourcing agreement in Europe (earlier post), A.P. Moller – Maersk has invested in California-based WasteFuel, a start-up focused on turning waste into sustainable aviation fuel, green bio-methanol, and renewable natural gas. This investment is made through Maersk Growth, the corporate venture arm of A.P. Moller – Maersk.

Maersk’s investment will enable WasteFuel to develop biorefineries that utilize the most effective technologies available to produce sustainable fuels from unrecoverable waste that would otherwise degrade, and release methane and other harmful emissions into the atmosphere.

Maersk is confident that green bio-methanol is one of the promising fuels of the future as it can be scaled up and play an important role in decarbonizing supply chains within the next 10-15 years. For each feedstock and project, Maersk evaluates its sustainability as well as the emission reductions, using lifecycle analysis including all greenhouse gases.

Sourcing an adequate amount of green fuel for methanol fueled vessels will be very challenging, as it requires a significant production ramp up globally. Collaboration and partnerships are key to scaling the production and distribution of sustainable fuels, Maersk said.

WasteFuel utilizes proven, scalable technologies to convert municipal (trash) and agricultural waste into low-carbon fuels, renewable natural gas, and green methanol. The company says it has developed technology pathways to meaningfully improve yields and further reduce emissions.

WasteFuel is also developing projects in Asia and the Americas including a biorefinery in Manila, Philippines, to produce low-carbon fuels. The company has announced an offtake agreement with NetJets—the world’s largest private jet company owned by Berkshire Hathaway.

With the investment, Morten Bo Christiansen, VP and Head of Decarbonization at A.P. Moller – Maersk, is joining the Board of WasteFuel.

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Drilling kicks off and uranium analysis planned at Benmara battery metals project

Special Report: Resolution Minerals has started drilling at its Benmara battery metals project in the Northern Territory. … Read More
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Resolution Minerals has started drilling at its Benmara battery metals project in the Northern Territory.

The 2,500m RC drilling program is focused on the highest priority targets of 4km and 2km strike length derived from a VTEM survey – and new Geoscience Australia research which identified prospective rock types previously mis-mapped.

The large-scale targets are prospective for sediment hosted battery metals including copper, silver, lead, zinc, and cobalt.

Plus, the targets are on the margin of the South Nicholson Basin and Murphy Inlier on the Fish River fault which is analogous and along strike from Aeon Metal’s (ASX:AML) polymetallic Walford Creek deposits (40 million tonnes at 2% copper equivalent).

It presents the company with strong exposure to the strengthening demand for battery metals – and a tightening market for copper.

And because the targets have no prior drilling, Resolution Minerals (ASX:RML) is confident this underpins the potential to rerate on any discovery made.

 

Fully funded to ramp up exploration

Resolution is fully funded to complete the drilling with existing cash following a recent $1.7 million placement.

“We are very excited to announce drilling has started on our maiden drill program at the under-explored Benmara Battery Metals Project in the Northern Territory,” managing director Duncan Chessell said.

“The program follows up large scale targets derived from our recent VTEM geophysics survey for sediment hosted stratiform copper and other battery metals.

“With virtually no prior drilling conducted into these large-scale targets, we look forward to the results of this exciting opportunity and accelerating exploration.”

The drilling will take three weeks to complete, with assays expected in early November.

Pic: The company holds the Wollogorang and Benmara copper-cobalt-uranium projects in the NT, which includes the Stanton cobalt deposit.

Assessing uranium upside off the back of strong prices

The area surrounding Benmara is also highly prospective for uranium, with the 51.9-million-pound Westmoreland Uranium deposit nearby.

Additional uranium occurrences have also been mapped within 2km of the Benmara tenement boundaries.

And with rising uranium spot prices close to US$50/lb – a nine-year high – it puts the company in a good position to assess the uranium potential of the project.

 

Wollogorang project potential

Then there’s the company’s Wollogorang project in the McArthur Basin in the NT, which is prospective for sedimentary hosted battery metals: copper, cobalt, and hard rock uranium.

There’s proven mineralisation within the Stanton cobalt deposit of 942,000 tonnes at 0.13% cobalt, 0.06% nickel, 0.12% copper.

And a VTEM survey highlighted the sediment hosted copper potential, identifying 40 conductors.

Plus, drill targets at the Gregjo copper prospect are set to test a chargeable IP geophysical anomaly underlying copper mineralisation intersected in shallow RAB drilling of up to 4% copper.

The project is subject to a $5 million farm-in agreement with OZ Minerals (ASX:OZL) to earn 51% interest, after which the company can retain 49% by participating.

Or at Resolution’s election, OZ has the option to earn 75% interest by sole funding to a final positive decision to mine, with Resolution appointed as operator.

 

 

Resolution Minerals share price today:


This article was developed in collaboration with Fresh Equities, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.

 This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.

 

The post Drilling kicks off and uranium analysis planned at Benmara battery metals project appeared first on Stockhead.

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Energy & Critical Metals

SSE Renewables and Microsoft launch puffin monitoring pilot

UK energy company, SSE Renewables has launched the Flying Squad initiative to monitor and protect puffins around the Scottish coastline.
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UK energy company SSE Renewables has launched the Flying Squad initiative to monitor and protect puffins around the Scottish coastline.

The initiative will see the energy company team up with Microsoft, tech firm Avanade and NatureScot to monitor puffin numbers.

The technology used for the initiative has recently been tested during the seabird’s breeding season on the Isle of May in the Firth of Forth.

Four cameras in position on the island gathered footage and automatically detected and counted the birds until they recently left the island.

Simon Turner, CTO, Data & AI, at Avanade: “As the investment in renewable energy continues, it’s even more important to ensure that developments, like wind farms, are not having any detrimental environmental effects.

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“With SSE Renewables, we saw an opportunity to use camera and AI technology to more accurately and efficiently, and less invasively monitor the wellbeing and breeding habits of the puffins that are attracted to this particular area on the Isle of May.”

If successful it is expected the technology will be used for a number of species recognition projects around SSE sites including hydropower stations and wind farms.

Rachel McEwen, SSE’s Chief Sustainability Officer, said: “…Our assets can have far-reaching consequences across a wide range of issues, from reducing the effects of global climate change to supporting local habitats.

“The impacts of our hydro and wind farm operations and our transmission and distribution networks need to be actively managed and what initiatives like the Flying Squad show is that there are also incredible opportunities to be had in protecting and enhancing existing and new habitats as we harness natural resources such as water and wind for renewable energy generation.”

James Scobie from SSE’s Flying Squad. Credit: SSE

James Scobie from the Flying Squad said: “The implications for the Microsoft/Avanade technology are huge. It’s our ultimate aspiration that this incredible cutting-edge technology could be deployed in a variety of different settings to monitor species of interest in the future.”

Erica Knott, NatureScot Marine Sustainability Manager said: “There are exciting possibilities for further development, for example, to track activity at individual breeding burrows or overcome some of the trickier aspects of seabird monitoring, such as remoteness and weather, at other sites.

“This would enhance our understanding of seabird populations and their interactions with human activities, helping us to advise on the future management and monitoring of marine developments, in particular, to secure renewable energy to address climate change while also safeguarding biodiversity.”

Recently, SSE and Microsoft signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU), establishing a Sustainability Partnership between the companies, to develop and deploy innovation projects aligned to the zero carbon emissions ambition of both companies.

The MOU represents SSE and Microsoft’s commitment to working together on several future initiatives, to promote the awareness of business challenges and opportunities around sustainability, technology, and digital innovation.

The post SSE Renewables and Microsoft launch puffin monitoring pilot appeared first on Power Engineering International.

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Evergrande Auto Hasn’t Sold A Single Car, But Has Enriched Its Founder And His Friends Plenty

Evergrande Auto Hasn’t Sold A Single Car, But Has Enriched Its Founder And His Friends Plenty

While everyone has been focusing on Evergrande…

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Evergrande Auto Hasn't Sold A Single Car, But Has Enriched Its Founder And His Friends Plenty

While everyone has been focusing on Evergrande as a property developer, few know the story about how Evergrande Auto became worth $86.6 billion at one point without selling a single car. The company now trades at a fraction, about 4%, of its all time high. While shareholders were wiped out for the most part, insiders made out well. 

On Tuesday of this week, the company did what it does best. No, not make vehicles: pay insiders. Evergrande Auto "granted 323.72 million share options worth HK$1.26 billion to three directors and around 3,180 employees of the company," a new report from Caixin notes.

Founder Hui Ka Yan and "friends" in his circle have made out the best from the fallen company. How well have they done? One "friend" of the founder bought 80 million shares in the company before it was renamed as Evergrande Auto for HK$0.30 each. They then sold them all for HK$50 per share, netting the friend more than HK$4 billion.

Hey, it's great work if you can get it. 

Caixin reports that the primary purpose of Evergrande Auto was to raise capital for the group company Evergrande. While the parent company claimed it was investing some 47 billion yuan into the auto company, analysts are starting to wonder if the market funded these investments instead. 

One analyst told Caixin: “Evergrande Auto had raised 30 billion yuan in two rounds, which means that the company mostly used investors’ money — instead of its own capital — to invest, and it managed to gain a high market value (for the auto company). Consequently, with its shares (in the auto company) at high price, it could use them as collateral to raise even more money.”

The company focused more on M&A than it did on making cars, the report says. For example, it bought a major stake in Xinjiang Guanghui Industry Investment Group Co. Ltd. for 14.5 billion yuan in 2018. As Caixin notes, that company is a stakeholder in China Grand Automotive Services Group Co. Ltd., which is one of the largest auto dealers in the country.

The stake was later sold off in 2019 when Evergrande needed cash. 

In 2019, Evergrande Auto's predecessor bought a 51% stake in National Electric Vehicle Sweden AB (NEVS) for $930 million, the report notes. Evergrande's stock price rose as a result. 

Part of the mechanics that helped Evergrande Auto's predecessor rocket higher included the fact that 18 shareholders owned 19.83% of the company's shares. When combined with the 74.99% of the issued shares held by the company, that only left 5.18% of Evergrande shares to be traded freely. 

Evergrande also acquired a 51% equity stake in Fangchebao Group Co. Ltd. using its shares. Fangchebao then brought in 17 investors in March 2021 that helped it raise capital at a valuation of HK$163.5 billion. Evergrande made HK$8.175 billion upon selling its shares.

Analysts, however, were baffled as to how Evergrande was able to bring in investors at the elevated valuation. The secret lied in a promise of a buyback from Evergrande.

One investor told Caixin: “What we valued was its valuation adjustment mechanism (对赌协议). If Fangchebao failed to go public within a year, Evergrande would buy back our shares at a 15% premium to the prevailing market price. At least, through this mechanism, we could get out money back.”

Those investors thought Evergrande could continue to push up Fangchebao's valuation and that Evergrande wouldn't fail within a year.

Another investor said: "However, Fangchebao was a relatively poor quality company, much worse than Evergrande Property Services. In Fangchebao’s case, it was better not to go public. It would be more troublesome after the listing because its poor performance would become public knowledge.”

Then there's the question of who truly benefitted from Evergrande's financial wheeling and dealing over the years. While investors and shareholders now suffer the consequences of the company's poor decision making, Hui Ka Yan's personal assets are now mysteriously being "transferred to new ownership", the report says. In fact, Hui was easily the single biggest beneficiary of the dividends paid by Evergrande from 2011 to 2020. 53 billion yuan of the 69 billion yuan that Evergrande has paid in dividends since it listed have gone to Hui.

You can read Caixin's detailed report here

Tyler Durden Thu, 09/23/2021 - 19:20
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