Carnegie gets grant for Albany wave project, debt for 10-MW solar farm

CETO 6 design. Source: Carnegie. License: All rights reserved.

October 10 (Renewables Now) - Australia's Carnegie Clean Energy Ltd (ASX:CCE) has won a AUD-15.75-million (USD 12.3/EUR 10.4m) grant from the Western Australian government for a wave energy project at Albany and has obtained debt finance for a 10-MW solar park.

Carnegie secured the grant from the state government after winning a tender, which was unveiled in July. As part of the tender, the University of Western Australia was awarded AUD 3.75 million to set up an associated wave energy research centre in Albany.

Carnegie will use the grant, announced on Friday, to install its CETO 6 wave energy converter device with a capacity of 1 MW off Albany. Installation is to take place during the 2019/2020 summer weather window.

The company also said that the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) has conditionally approved its request to transfer ARENA's CETO 6 Project funding from Garden Island to Albany. The remaining AUD 11.7 million grant funding from ARENA's CETO 6 Project funding will thus be used for the Albany wave energy project. Carnegie's Garden Island site will be used for research and prototype testing, as well as working with other wave energy developers, the company said.

The Albany project will demonstrate Carnegie's technology and will also provide common user infrastructure to other wave energy developers.

Carnegie has been planning a wave farm in Albany for years. It intends to follow the initial 1-MW phase with a 20-MW expansion and potentially turning the site into a 100-MW wave farm.

Separately, Carnegie said on Monday it has secured a 12-month construction debt financing of AUD 7.5 million for its 10-MW Northam solar project in Western Australia.

In relation to that financing facility, Carnegie carried out a debt restructuring that saw AUD 2.8 million convertible note debt fully converted to equity and wound up. The company will issue 19.6 million ordinary shares and 35 million five‐year options to the note holders for zero payment.

The build-own-operate project in Northam is the first large-scale solar project for the joint venture between Carnegie subsidiary Energy Made Clean (EMC) and Lendlease Services Pty Ltd. It will consist of 34,000 solar panels and will be battery storage ready.  

The debt finance was secured from Perth-based private investment group Asymmetric Credit Partners Pty Ltd. Carnegie plans to refinance with "major Australian retail bank," once the project has been completed.

(AUD 1 = USD 0.779/EUR 0.661)

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Plamena has been a UK-focused reporter for many years. As part of the Renewables Now team she is taking a keen interest in policy moves.

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