Thursday, 17 March 2011

AGL to build $45m plant for Vic polymers maker

Canberra Times
Saturday 12/3/2011, Page: 8

AGL Energy says it will build a $45 million cogeneration plant in Victoria for polymers maker Qenos. The cogeneration plant is expected to reduce emissions from Qenos by 100,000 tonnes a year, equivalent to taking 24,390 cars off the road, AGL Energy said yesterday. AGL Energy will secure a 15 year operating and maintenance agreement on the plant with options to extend to 25 years.

AGL Energy also will become the sole supplier of natural gas to the site, expected to be 4.5 petajoules a year. "This represents the largest investment in industrial or manufacturing cogeneration in over 10 years", AGL Energy, Merchant Energy group general manager Anthony Fowler said. "It also helps Qenos remain competitive as Australia prepares for a carbon constraint". Qenos is the only Australia manufacturer of polyethylene and polymers, which are used to make plastics such as milk bottles, packaging, pipes and water tanks. The Altona plant will have a capacity of 21 MWs and produce 88 tonnes of steam per hour.

Cogeneration facilities work by capturing waste heat to produce electricity through a turbine generator. "As this form of energy production is more efficient, it produces less greenhouse gas emissions and is often highly economic for businesses", Mr Fowler said. Shares in AGL Energy were down 21¢ at $14.01. Qenos says it adds value to Australia's oil and gas reserves by creating "innovative products that promote sustainability across Australian industries".