Australian Financial Review: Potential ‘Beginning of End’ for Victoria Coal Industry

first_imgAustralian Financial Review: Potential ‘Beginning of End’ for Victoria Coal Industry FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Ben Potter for the Australian Financial Review:French energy giant Engie is considering closing Hazelwood power station in a move that could signal the beginning of the end for the cheap brown coal power that helped build Victoria’s post-World War 2 industry.  Luke van der Meulen, president of the Morwell branch of the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union, said closure would be devastating and called on the Victorian and federal governments to step in with a plan to diversify the La Trobe Valley economy away from coal.“If it’s left up to the market we are buggered,” Mr van der Meulen said.It confirms the shift away from coal in the NEM, but Mr Mountain said about 3500 megawatts of coal fired power had already been removed from the NEM in the past three years with no impact on emissions. Neither would Hazelwood’s closure have much impact on Victoria’s NEM prices, given the 7000 megawatts of surplus NEM capacity, he said. Hazelwood was sold to Britain’s International Power for $2.35 billion in 1996 and is now owned 72 per cent by Engie and 28 per cent by Japan’s Mitsui.Engie extended Hazelwood a $652 million lifeline in 2012 but the plant may be worth next to nothing now. It makes about $100 million a year before interest and tax, but is 47 years old and site remediation and other closure costs could easily wipe out any value, said Tim King of the anti-coal Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis.Full article: Hazelwood closure could mark beginning of end for Victoria’s brown coallast_img