Here’s a surprising statistic that might offer some cheer for an Australia government under pressure from the $23 fixed price of a tonne of carbon dioxide: European carbon permits were the world’s fastest-rising commodity in June on Friday, closely followed by international credits.
The EU credits jumped 27 per cent in the month on expectations that the bloc would finally act to reign in a massive surplus of credits. They jumped to a three month high of €8.30 ($10.25) on Friday. International credits, also known as certified emissions reductions (CERs), of the sort that Australian companies will be able to use to offset their emissions from 2015, jumped 20 per cent to €4.17.
They usually closely track energy prices, but Bloomberg New Energy Finance noted that Brent crude oil traded lost 8.5 per cent over the month. “Carbon has continued to hold up in the face of weak energy markets and continuing concerns about the debt-laden euro zone,” Matthew Gray, an analyst in London at Jefferies Bache Ltd., said in a research note. “With regulatory intervention in sight, carbon has no reason to follow its traditional price-drivers with any real conviction.”
Earth Heat seeks $30m
Australian-based Earth Heat Resources says it is seeking to raise $US30 million in equity to held funding of its Copahue geothermal project in Argentina, the first in that country. It is also proposing to buy its joint venture partner, Canadian company Geothermal One, for $C6 million. Earth Heat has retained Panama finance and advisory firm CIFI for the raising, which the company expects to be in the form of non voting preference shares in a special purpose vehicle. The Copahue project will begin as a 30 MW geothermal development from volcanic resources with the potential for expansion. Earth Heat has the right to earn up to 87.5% of the Project by funding various stages of development. Earth Heat has a market capitalization of $14 million.
Cardno buys US carbon firm
Australian listed infrastructure and environment services group, Cardno, has agreed to pay up to $31 million for a US-based firm specializing in mining engineering and carbon management. Cardno said the Virginia-based Marshall Miller & Associates, a 180-person firm with revenues of around $US33 million, would enable it to provide specialist services in greenhouse gas inventory, carbon sequestration and carbon off-set credit verification.
“These services are becoming increasingly critical to our clients in Australia and across various sectors globally,” CEO Andrew Buckley said in a statement. Separately, Cardno as also agreed to pay up to $US14.25 million for EM-Assist, a 150-person environmental services and compliance management firm based in California.
Australia’s Vmoto said it has signed a deal to produce 40,000 electric scooters in China for a Chinese company Shanghai PowerEagle. The contract, which will be filled at Vmoto’s Nanjing facilities, represents a total sales value of $86 million to the end of 2015. The company said China is by far the biggest two wheel transportation market in the world, and the contract would improve its economies of scale and purchasing power.
Money for wave energy
The Minister for Energy Martin Ferguson is to announce grants for two wave energy projects in Australia later today. The expected recipients are the privately held Oceanlinx and BioPower Systems. The grants are being made under the $110 million Emerging Renewables program.