ECT invited to present to India’s Energy Minister

Sydney Clean Energy Roundtable

ECT’s Executive Chairman Mr Glenn Fozard yesterday presented to India’s Federal Minister for Power, Coal, New & Renewable Energy and Mines the Hon. Shri Piyush Goyal.

Minister Goyal was in Australia to lead the ‘Clean Energy Roundtable’, a private business meeting with Australian Government and Industry leaders to discuss Australian clean energy solutions, and their opportunities in India.

Mr Fozard presented ECT’s Coldry and Matmor project, being pursued in partnership with NLC India and NMDC, along with our highly skilled engineering partners Thermax and M.N. Dastur.

The Coldry process, a low temperature, a low-pressure, cost-effective method for drying high moisture brown coal, can reduce its CO2 intensity in electricity in production and other higher value applications such as coal-to-gas and high-value chemicals.

The Matmor process, a unique iron-making method that replaces higher cost coking coal with lower cost lignite, utilises alternative, lower cost iron ore fines instead of premium lump ore via a lower cost plant capable of integrating with existing downstream secondary steel making processes. It features an alternative chemical pathway to achieve the reduction of metal oxides at lower temperatures and faster process times than traditional methods.

Combined, Coldry acts as a front-end material preparation stage for Matmor.

The presentation highlighted the economic and environmental benefits of the technologies. Mr. Fozard emphasised the superiority of the financial results generated by a commercial scale Coldry-Matmor-Electric Arc Furnace (C/M-EAF) integrated plant compared to a traditional Blast Furnace-Basic Oxygen Furnace (BF-BOF) technology combination, as detailed in the Techno-Economic Feasibility (TEF) Study, completed earlier this year.

A headline key performance indicator for any industrial project is its Internal Rate of Return (IRR). At more than 17% IRR, ECT’s solution can deliver a distinct advantage over the traditional Blast Furnace route.

ECT’s technology solution also helps achieve economic and environmental objectives, including increased raw material security through utilisation of domestic resources and improved environmental outcomes through lower CO2 emissions, among others.

Importantly, the presentation also spotlights the benefit of decoupling the project’s financial performance from the volatility associated with traditional iron making raw materials; coking coal and premium lump ore.

Following the presentation, the Minister provided some very direct and encouraging feedback, noting that the company’s technologies could help India reduce her reliance on imports by enabling the utilisation of domestic resources for steel market inputs.

The TEF study, released mid-year, used average pricing applicable through the period July 2015 to June 2016 which, being based on recent historic lows, was conservative. This conservatism, though prudent at this stage of development, downplayed the core competitive advantages of Matmor in its ability to utilise alternative raw materials.

With recent structural changes to the supply of coking coal, dramatic escalations in price have impacted the steel market significantly, with the most recent commodity reporting information showing a further escalation of coking coal prices to US$245 per tonne on the spot market, and 2017 futures holding between $US 170-210. Importantly, using the cost modelling developed as part of the TEF study, the BF/BOF technology has a zero IRR at coking coal prices above $US155 per tonne. Matmor, on the other hand, is insulated from such impacts.

Those impacts are outlined within the slide deck available for download below.

Mr Fozard stated “The Minister was again very supportive in his questions and comments, and expressed a desire for us to move more quickly. Indeed, he recommended we make direct contact with his office so that more support may be arranged to accelerate progress.”

Other presenters included:

  • Origin Energy
  • Aurizon
  • Downer EDI

Download (PDF): Presentation to Minister Goyal