Last week, ITOCHU, a Japanese trading company with an equity market capitalisation of US$29Bn, confirmed it would not develop any more coal-fired power stations. Back in May 2018, the company said it recognised it needed to address the impact of climate change; now it has acted. “We recognise that, among other things, our coal-related business must be one of the issues which we have to promptly address as its impact on our business and our stakeholders is significant,” the company said. “We hereby commit ourselves, as our policy, not to develop any new coal-fired power generation business or to acquire any new thermal coal mining interests.” It also announced it had sold an interest in the Rolleston coal mine, held through a wholly-owned subsidiary in Australia. This was the second such sale by ITOCHU of a coal mine, following the sale of its interest in the NCA joint venture in September 2016. As Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis director of energy and finance studies Tim Buckley noted, the company, which had long traded coal mined in countries such as Australia and sold it for generation in Asia, is redirecting its capital allocations away from thermal coal mining and coal-fired power plants and proposing to instead prioritise investment in “low carbon industries of the future.” Coincidentally, last week also saw energy research consultancy Wood Mackenzie highlight the very positive outlook for Japan’s offshore wind sector, which it said was projected to reach 4 GW in 2028.
Offshore Wind Journal 18th Feb 2019 read more »