Billionaire-backed solar company Sun Cable goes bankrupt amid funding battle

Sun Cable, the company behind the world’s largest solar power project aiming to supply up to 15% of Singapore’s annual renewable power needs, has gone into self-management.

The company was backed by two Australian billionaires, Atlassian co-founder Mike Cannon-Brookes and Fortescue Metals Group former CEO Andrew Forrest.

in obscure media statement On January 11, SolarVenture said it had “made the difficult decision to go into self-management.”

The move “paves the way” for Sun Cable to “access additional capital for the continued development of its flagship project, Australia-Asia Power Link (AAPowerLink).

The company describes AAPowerLink on its website as the world’s largest solar energy infrastructure project, harnessing solar energy from the Northern Territory, one of the sunniest places on earth.

The energy will then be delivered to Darwin and Singapore 24/7 through a 5,000 km transmission system.

“This appointment was due to being inconsistent with the objectives of all our shareholders,” the company said.

“Funding proposals were made, but no consensus was reached on the company’s future direction and funding structure.”

Solar Ventures has appointed global advisory firm FTI Consulting as its manager, and FRI said it will work with Sun Cable and key stakeholders to “determine the appropriate next steps for the business.”

“This could include a process for seeking expressions of interest in either recapitalizing or selling the business.”

well positioned for project completion

Sun Cable founder and CEO David Griffin said the company has made “extraordinary progress in the development of AAPowerLink” and that “AAPowerLink is still on track to completion.”

He argued that the demand for providing “reliable, 24/7 renewable energy” in the Northern Territory and region is “significantly increasing”.

Meanwhile, Cannon-Brookes, chairman of Sun Cable, said he believes “here in Australia, we will play a major role in providing the world with green energy”.

“I fully support this ambition and the team and look forward to supporting the next chapter of the company.”

The collapse of the Sun Cable leaves the center-left Labor government with a net loss of $4.7 billion (US$3.2 billion) by 2050 to fund renewable energy infrastructure in New South Wales in December. It happened despite promoting zero emissions.

“Recently, large-scale solar PV has started to expand rapidly. It’s growing, reaching a five-year growth rate of 1,747 percent,” the government’s climate change department said on its website.

In Australia, rooftop solar systems continue to be the largest full-time equivalent (fee) employer of any renewable energy type, but since 2012, the share of renewable energy employment has fallen annually to Decreasing. Australian Bureau of Statisticsseconds.

However, in 2021 report According to the International Energy Agency, it has found that “relatively high investment costs, lack of dedicated auctions, and lack of competition from solar and battery projects hinder the rapid expansion of centralized solar panels.” bottom.

Transitioning to costly renewable energy

Governments have touted renewable energy as a cheap solution to climate change, but a Canadian study found that when all costs are taken into account, wind and solar are actually more expensive to generate and such We found the migration to be environmentally infeasible.

“When we look at the environmental impact of an energy system, we have to look at the entire value chain,” said Dr. Lars Schernikau, first author of the study. SAGE Talk in May. Schernikau is an energy economist and commodities he trader.

“There is raw material production that we have to consider. There is raw material processing that we have to consider. There is raw material and product transportation that we have to consider,” he said.

“Of course, there is the actual operation, the burning of materials, whatever we do in production. And then there is recycling.

Schernikau said there are also non-emission issues to consider, including energy efficiency, material efficiency, space requirements, waste requirements, plant and animal impacts, and health and safety impacts.

“Wind and solar are CO2-free? Why? Because they don’t produce CO2 during combustion.

Harry Lee contributed to this article.

Nina Nguyen

Nina Nguyen is a reporter based in Sydney. She covers Australian news with a focus on social, cultural and identity issues. She is fluent in Vietnamese. Please contact her at [email protected]