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Ambre Energy Limited is an Australian coal and oil shale company. It has offices in Brisbane and Salt Lake City.

HistoryEdit

Ambre Energy was founded in June 2005 by Edek Choros, a geologist and mining engineer. In September 2005, Ambre Energy filed a patent for the Hybrid Energy System, a method for processing low value coal and other carbonaceous materials.

In April 2006, Ambre Energy started negotiations with American oil shale technology company Oil-Tech, Inc., incorporated in February 2000 in Utah. Oil-Tech, Inc. was a developer of the Oil-Tech staged electrically heated retort process for the oil shale pyrolysis. In October 2006, Ambre Energy and Oil-Tech established Millennium Synfuels, LLC, which take over property rights of the retorting technology. By 30 June 2007 Ambre Energy acquired 6% of Oil Tech and 17 October 2007 it acquired 35%. Further Oil Tech become a wholly owned subsidiary of Ambre Energy and as of 21 July 2008 was merged into Ambre Energy.

Felton Clean Coal ProjectEdit

Ambre Energy is planning to build and operate a clean coal gasification plant at Felton Valley, 30 kilometres (19 mi) south west of Toowoomba, Queensland. The plan includes construction of an open-pit coal mine, and carbon capture facility.[1] At the final stage, the plant is expected to produce enough gas for production of 2.8 million tonnes per year of dimethyl ether and generate 650 MW of electricity. It is also expected to produce by-products for fertilizer production, and olefins and plastics manufacturing.

In April 2012, Campbell Newman, the then-incoming Premier of Queensland, rejected the plans, with The Australian reporting that Ambre Energy was "at risk of financial collapse" in the wake of the decision.[2] The company issued an official response to the article refuting the claim, adding that the Felton project "remains in the early investigation stage."[3]

In December 2016, plans to mine in Felton resurfaced after Ambre Energy had two coal exploration permits renewed by the Queensland state government.[4]

North American operationsEdit

In February 2009, it was announced that Ambre Energy were seeking to construct a coal plant in southeastern Montana for US$375 million that would produce up to 4.4 million tons of coal and 1.6 million barrels of synthetic crude annually.[5] The company went on to acquire a 50% share in a mine in Decker, with Cloud Peak Energy owning the other 50%. However, in July 2012, Cloud Peak sued Ambre Energy, alleging that Ambre Energy's export plans for the mine were "developed without Cloud Peak's approval" and that Ambre Energy "intend to keep for themselves a disproportionate share of any potential value of the coal" from the mine.[6] In December 2012, Cloud Peak agreed to sell their share of the mine to Ambre Energy for US$57 million, but in May 2013, it was announced that the deal was being renegotiated.[7]

In November 2010, plans to build a coal export terminal in Longview, Washington by Millenium Bulk Logistics, a subsidiary of Ambre Energy, were announced.[8] Permits were approved by Cowlitz County commissioners later the same month,[9] but in March 2011, Millenium Bulk Logistics withdrew the plans with an intention to resubmit their application "after doing environmental studies." The initial application provided an exportation target of 5.7 million tons of coal per year, but reports suggested Ambre Energy had plans to export as much as 80 million tons annually.[10] In addition to this project, later plans to build a storage facility in the Port of Morrow and the Port of St. Helens in Oregon faced public opposition and were eventually rejected by state regulators in September 2014, citing potential damage to marine and riparian ecosystems and a potential threat to fishing grounds long used by Native American tribes in the region.[11][12][13][14][15]

In December 2014, Ambre Energy sold all of its North American assets to Denver-based private equity firm Resource Capital Funds for US$18 million, with the new company continuing operations as Ambre Energy North America.[16] In April 2015, Ambre Energy North America changed its name to Lighthouse Resources Inc., but made no changes to the company's leadership.[17]

Oil-Tech processEdit

Ambre Energy operates a small Oil-Tech-type of shale oil extraction pilot plant and 34,000 acres (140 km2) of oil shale leases, approximately 40 miles (64 km) southeast of Vernal, Utah. In Oil-Tech process, crushed oil shale is lifted by a conveyor system to the vertical retort, and is loaded into the retort from the top. The retort consists of a series of connected individual heating chambers, stacked atop each other. Heating rods extend into the centers of each of these chambers. The feed oil shale is heated to increasingly higher temperatures as it moves down the retort, attaining a temperature of 1,000 °F (540 °C) in the lowest chamber. The gases and vapors are vacuumed into a condensing unit. The spent shale is used for pre-heating feed oil shale.[18][19] The advantages of this technology are its modular design, which enhances its portability and adaptability, its low water requirements, its heating efficiency, and the relatively high quality of the resulting product.[19]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Community opposition forces smaller coals to liquid project". ABC Australia. 7 May 2008. Retrieved 19 August 2008.
  2. ^ Klan, Anthony (2 April 2012). "Miner Ambre Energy in financial trouble as Queensland rejects its coalmine project". The Australian. Retrieved 21 June 2019.
  3. ^ "Ambre Energy responds to article in The Australian". Ambre Energy. 2 April 2012. Archived from the original on 1 May 2012. Retrieved 21 June 2019.
  4. ^ Gillespie, Tom (14 December 2016). "Felton farmers gear up to fight return of Ambre Energy". The Toowoomba Chronicle. Retrieved 21 June 2019.
  5. ^ Brown, Matthew; Deines, Kahrin (4 February 2009). "$375-Million Coal Plant Proposed for SE Montana". Flathead Bacon. Associated Press. Retrieved 21 June 2019.
  6. ^ Learn, Scott (16 July 2012). "Lawsuit clouds Ambre Energy's plans to export coal from Columbia River ports". The Oregonian. Retrieved 21 June 2019.
  7. ^ Brown, Matthew (8 May 2013). "Ambre Energy's export coal deal stalls as companies renegotiate". The Daily News. Associated Press. Retrieved 21 June 2019.
  8. ^ Learn, Scott (16 November 2010). "Australian coal company wants to build coal-export terminal in Longview to ship to Asia". The Oregonian. Retrieved 21 June 2019.
  9. ^ Learn, Scott (23 November 2010). "Cowlitz County OKs permits for Longview, Wash., terminal that would export coal to Asia". The Oregonian. Retrieved 21 June 2019.
  10. ^ Connelly, Joel (15 March 2011). "Strategic withdrawal for Longview coal exporter". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Retrieved 21 June 2019.
  11. ^ Loomis, Brandon (23 February 2011). "Protesters rally in SLC against coal-export plan". The Salt Lake Tribune. Retrieved 21 June 2019.
  12. ^ Learn, Scott (17 January 2012). "Two coal companies want to export coal through the Port of St. Helens". The Oregonian. Retrieved 21 June 2019.
  13. ^ Learn, Scott (7 May 2012). "Kennedy, activists rally in Portland against exporting coal from Northwest ports". The Oregonian. Retrieved 21 June 2019.
  14. ^ Learn, Scott (17 July 2012). "Ambre Energy needs Oregon air permit to store coal at Port of Morrow". The Oregonian. Retrieved 21 June 2019.
  15. ^ Storrow, Benjamin (2 September 2014). "With Oregon and Vancouver decided, coal export fight moves to Washington". Casper Star Tribune. Retrieved 21 June 2019.
  16. ^ Storrow, Benjamin (8 December 2014). "Ambre Energy sells North American assets in bid to save coal ports". Casper Star Tribune. Retrieved 21 June 2019.
  17. ^ Plaven, George (13 April 2015). "Ambre Energy changes name to Lighthouse Resources". East Oregonian. Retrieved 21 June 2019.
  18. ^ Secure Fuels from Domestic Resources: The Continuing Evolution of America's Oil Shale and Tar Sands Industries (PDF) (4th ed.). United States Department of Energy. 2010. pp. 10–11. Archived from the original (PDF) on 27 April 2011. Retrieved 6 May 2011.
  19. ^ a b "Appendix A: Oil Shale Development Background and Technology Overview" (PDF). Oil Shale and Tar Sands Resource Management Plan Amendments to Address Land Use Allocations in Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming and Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement. Argonne National Laboratory. November 2008. pp. A&#45, 54–56. Retrieved 23 October 2010.

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