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 Australia: NSW’s transition plan for a declining coal market is still missing

State government forecasts show the threat to the Hunter Valley’s coal industry is yet to be taken seriously

The pipeline of coal-fired power projects in New South Wales’ biggest coal export destination is collapsing. In January 2019, the 2 gigawatt (GW) Chiba coal power project in Japan was cancelled. This follows the cancellation of the 1GW Soga coal-fired power project in December 2018. The 1.3GW Akita project has reportedly been cancelled according to […]

IEEFA Op-ed: Pakistan’s energy pathway under the spotlight

Major seaborne thermal coal importer with untapped renewables potential

With Chinese thermal coal imports set to go into decline, coal exporters are depending on countries like Pakistan to pick up the slack. Pakistan is expanding its electricity generation capability with Chinese financed and built power plants. China’s role in Pakistan’s infrastructure roll-out, known as the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) is a key part of […]

IEEFA op ed: China must reconcile energy rhetoric and reality

IEEFA op ed: China must reconcile energy rhetoric and reality

Chinese funding responsible for more than a quarter of all new coal plants outside its borders

SYDNEY—At the first ever ‘Belt and Road’ forum hosted in Beijing in 2017, President Xi pledged the US$900 billion infrastructure project would ‘seize new opportunities… and achieve green and low-carbon development.’ Yet as analysis this month demonstrated, Chinese funding is responsible for more than a quarter of all new coal plants outside its borders, many […]

February 11, 2019 Read More →

IEEFA update: South African coal exports face long-term decline

Weaker 2018 exports are a sign of things to come

SYDNEY–In 2018, coal exports out of Richards Bay Coal Terminal (RBCT), South Africa’s main coal export port, declined 4% to 73.5 million tonnes (Mt). According to RBCT CEO Alan Waller, the decline was not due to operational issues but a matter of weaker global demand. This decline occurred despite the main off-taker of South African […]

January 29, 2019 Read More →
IEEFA Japan: Early days, but momentum away from coal is building

IEEFA Japan: Early days, but momentum away from coal is building

From September to December 2018, the prime minister, corporations and lenders have been pivoting towards renewables

SYDNEY –  Over the last decade Japan has consistently been placed in the top three leading global exporters of financially supported coal-fired power engineering and technology capacity. In recent months however there are emerging signs of a strategic pivot away from coal, driven by a recognition of the stranded asset risks in thermal coal mining […]

and December 21, 2018 Read More →
IEEFA update: Coal is failing to bring relief to Bangladesh’s electricity system

IEEFA update: Coal is failing to bring relief to Bangladesh’s electricity system

Delayed projects and fossil fuel import burden means renewable energy is the nation’s best route towards energy sustainability

SYDNEY – The financial results set out in the Bangladesh Power Development Board’s (BPDB) recently published annual report 2017-18 are troubling. The Power Development Board sits under the Ministry of Power, Energy and Mineral Resources and is responsible for the planning and development of Bangladesh’s power infrastructure as well as the majority of the nation’s […]

December 21, 2018 Read More →

IEEFA Australia: New South Wales needs a transition plan, not blind optimism, as coal export markets decline

Australia’s major customers, like Japan, are turning toward renewable energy; Prime Minister Shinzo Abe cites need to “reduce the use of fossil fuels”

IEEFA Australia  published a report this week showing that a permanent, long-term decline in New South Wales (NSW) thermal coal exports is on the horizon. We  examined the status of NSW coal export destinations and found the pipeline of new coal plants in major Asian markets experienced a 74% decline since 2015, with more contraction […]

November 1, 2018 Read More →

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 […]