Author Archive: Simon Nicholas

Energy Finance Analyst Simon Nicholas, a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales. Nicholas joined the IEEFA team in July 2016, after 16 years’ experience within the finance industry at ABN Amro, Macquarie Group and Commonwealth Bank of Australia in both Sydney and London.

IEEFA update: As Marubeni distances itself from coal, other industrial behemoths will follow

Growing acknowledgement of climate risk to companies and investors alike

SYDNEY — In distancing itself from coal, Japan’s Marubeni Corp., one of the world’s largest developers of coal-fired power plants, is adding to global momentum away from traditional forms of electricity generation. An announcement earlier this week by the company recognises climate risk as a threat to Marubeni’s business and shareholders and states that—as a […]

September 19, 2018 Read More →

IEEFA op-ed: A superpower taking its energy policy global

China is investing in renewables in developed market while continuing to push its outdated coal technology in Asia and Africa

The story of China’s overseas renewables investment, reaching well beyond its formal Belt and Road Initiative, remains largely untold. As private and stated-owned Chinese companies move aggressively to capitalize on fast-growing renewable energy markets, China’s investment in foreign wind-powered electricity markets has recently surpassed $12 billion in Europe and Australia alone, as shown in a […]

August 17, 2018 Read More →
IEEFA India: Something short of an ‘amazing opportunity’ for U.S. coal

IEEFA India: Something short of an ‘amazing opportunity’ for U.S. coal

Exporters will likely be disappointed at a policy- and cost-driven decline in important demand

SYDNEY — In describing India as an “amazing opportunity,” U.S. Energy Secretary Rick Perry presumably is eyeing it as a long-term export destination for American coal that would be used to power plants built with American technology. If this is the case, then the energy secretary is mistaken. Granted, U.S. coal exports surged in 2017 mostly […]

IEEFA South Africa: A New Coal Project Meant to Serve Export Markets Is Unlikely to Achieve Lasting Success

IEEFA South Africa: A New Coal Project Meant to Serve Export Markets Is Unlikely to Achieve Lasting Success

Structural Changes in Global Seaborne Thermal Markets Make for Long Odds

A proposal to develop a new, export thermal coal mine in Limpopo province, South Africa, faces too many headwinds to ever achieve long-term success. Resource Generation (ResGen), a company that is publicly listed in Australia and South Africa, plans to mine coal mostly for exports markets from its Boikarabelo project. The company also says it […]

IEEFA Update: In U.S. Utility NextEra, a Template for Electricity-Generation Transition

Blazing a Trail Into the New Energy Economy

The best-performing electricity utility in the U.S. is also the world’s biggest installer of renewables. NextEra Energy Inc., a major national electricity provider with 47 gigawatts (GW) of capacity focuses on providing long-term shareholder value through investment in clean energy—and is succeeding in its strategy. The company likes to highlight that it is the world’s […]

February 2, 2018 Read More →

IEEFA Update: Adani Stumbles Toward the Last-Chance Saloon

Denied by Its Erstwhile Enablers, an Indian Mining Giant in Australia Is Desperate for Help

The prospect in the New Year for Adani’s proposed Carmichael coal-mine proposal has taken a bleaker-than-ever bent. Following the Queensland government’s veto of the proposed A$1 billion government loan subsidy and after multiple Chinese banks ruled out funding the project, more nails have been driven into the project’s coffin. A month ago yesterday, Downer EDI, […]

IEEFA Update: One More Strike Against Adani’s Plans in Australia—India’s Two Largest Import-Coal Plants are in Severe Financial Distress

As Price of Renewables Goes Down, the Case for Import Coal Becomes Less and Less Viable

New developments in both the political and energy scene in India are increasing the possibility that Adani would be unable to export coal to India if it builds its proposed Carmichael mine in Australia’s Galilee Basin. India’s two largest import-coal power plants – Adani Power’s 4.6 GW Mundra plant and Tata Power’s own 4.0 GW […]

IEEFA Australia: Adani’s Bad Month

Few Financiers for a Project on the Ropes

The potential for Adani’s Carmichael coal mine proposal in northern Australia took a dramatic turn this week as one major Chinese bank after another ruled out financing the project. The news comes shortly after Queensland state’s Labor Party government promised to block a federal taxpayer-funded loan to Adani if re-elected—and odds are the party has […]

December 8, 2017 Read More →

IEEFA Update: Beijing May Intercede to Save Adani’s Australian Coal Project

A Deal May in the Works With China Machinery Engineering Corp., the Export-Import Bank of China and the China Construction Bank

Struggling to secure financing for is Carmichael mine-and-coal project, Adani is now exploring the possibility of sponsorship by Chinese state-owned enterprises. According to various sources, the state-owned China Machinery Engineering Corporation (CMEC) appears to be the leading contender for engineering, procurement and construction contracts for key parts of the proposed Carmichael mine and/or rail projects. […]

November 3, 2017 Read More →
IEEFA Asia: China’s Utility Sector Is in Change Mode

IEEFA Asia: China’s Utility Sector Is in Change Mode

Major Reorganizations in Progress as the World’s Most Populous Nation Moves Away From Coal

As regressive policies are being pursued noisily in the U.S. and Australia in hopes of salvaging the fading coal-fired power sector, news has broken more quietly around China’s persistence in moving aggressively toward a 21st-century energy economy. The most populous country on the planet is on course to install 50 gigawatts (GW) of solar-powered electricity […]

October 31, 2017 Read More →