Eco Investor Update
A Weekly News Update for Environmental Investors
May 2011 - No 31
APA Group and Envestra
Both APA and Envestra continue to trade at two year high security prices. (ASX: APA and ENV)
Tyndall Investment Management has increased its holding in DUET from 5 to 6 per cent. (ASX: DUE)
Sims Metal Management
Group chief executive officer Daniel W. Dienst said ""Our fiscal third quarter results were primarily driven by a stronger contribution from our North American metals business, as well as continued solid performance from our operations in Australasia and Europe."
On the outlook, he said "Despite uncertainties that have arisen from global events and natural disasters such as earthquakes, floods, cyclones, tornadoes and uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa, trading markets remain relatively liquid for deep sea ferrous exports.
"Ferrous prices have traded relatively sideways to modestly down over the past few weeks. The ferrous pricing environment, as well as freight rates, nonetheless remains attractive for international trading. We currently expect ferrous prices to trade roughly at their current levels over the balance of fiscal 2011.
"Non-ferrous markets remain liquid as well, albeit with a fair amount of pricing volatility, in the face of monetary tightening by China's central bank and government. As previously observed, scrap flows have improved with weather conditions in the Northern Hemisphere." (ASX: SGM)
NVM is a subsidiary of Limburgse Reconversie Maatschappij (LRM), a Flanders Authority owned enterprise with a charter to promote economic development in the province of Limburg.
The joint venture, named NV Limburg Gas, will be owned 80 per cent by Dart Energy and 20 per cent by NVM. Dart Energy will be operator and manager.
The joint venture will seek to explore, appraise and develop CBM resources on NVM's coal mining concession in the Campine Basin, and to secure further CBM and unconventional gas concessions in the region.
The initial focus is on the joint venture's exclusive right to explore for CBM in a 350 square kilometre area of the Campine Basin. Dart and NVM will fund the cost of exploration and share the benefits in proportion to their equity interests.
An initial appraisal program of a minimum of one core well will be drilled in 2012. Depending on outcomes, the program may be expanded to include additional core wells in 2012, and pilot wells in 2013.
In addition, Dart and NVM have agreed to exclusively work together under an Area of Mutual Interest Agreement (AMI) for three years to pursue further licenses in the Campine Basin. The Basin is generally unlicensed for CBM/ gas exploitation, although a Belgian government decree opening the region for licensing is expected in mid-2011. The AMI will initially target about 700 square kilometres.
Dart chief executive officer and managing director, Simon Potter, said "Dart acquired Composite Energy Limited to provide a low cost CBM platform in Europe with a maturing funnel of business opportunities, including the opportunity in Belgium which Composite has been working on securing for over 12 months.
"The initial entry cost into the joint venture is modest, but over time the potential exists to work through this joint venture and develop a material CBM resource in the Campine Basin which although prospective is currently unexplored. This transaction is therefore consistent with Dart's stated strategy of gaining low-cost access to high-graded opportunities proximate to high demand gas markets and high prices, and furthers our desire to selectively expand our acreage across Europe." (ASX: DTE)
Hastings Diversified Utilities
A chartered accountant from the UK, he worked in senior finance and general management roles before moving to Australia in 2004.
HDF chief executive Colin Atkin said "Matt's extensive knowledge of the pipeline operations, combined with his outstanding people and communication skills will ensure that the team will continue to perform at a high level, especially during this important phase for the business." (ASX: HDF)
Under the scale back, all eligible shareholders who applied for shares receive 828 new shares. 9,755,496 new shares were allotted at $2.05 each.
Proceeds of the share purchase plan and the recently completed institutional placement at $2.07 per share will fund additional expenditure including preliminary work on the Kangankunde Deposit in Malawi, the purchase of additional equipment and first fill chemicals for the Lynas Advanced Material Plant in Malaysia and general working capital. (ASX: LYC)
Ceramic Fuel Cells
Ceramic Fuel Cells is participating in CE Electric UK's £54 million low-carbon Smart Grid project. One of the four partners in the project is Durham University. Ceramic Fuel Cells' BlueGen heat and power unit will be housed in the Durham Energy Institute research laboratory, and run alongside other low carbon electricity technologies.
The Smart Grid project involves 14,000 homes and businesses and will assess the impact of technologies such as micro combined heat and power units on the electricity grid.
Ceramic Fuel Cells said the project will help shape the future for a low emission more efficient UK power grid. Durham University estimates that improvements to the power grid that result from the project could potentially save UK homes and businesses around £8 billion in energy costs and 43 million tonnes in CO2 emissions.
Meanwhile, a team at RMIT University's Centre for Design has found that Ceramic Fuel Cells' solid oxide fuel cells can deliver significant benefits in electricity production and carbon reduction to thousands of Australian buildings.
The fuel cells' power and reliability mean "they have great potential in industries like banking, data centres, grocery chains and storage facilities. Fuel cells are also cost-efficient alternatives to batteries in serving as back-up power systems."
Deepak Sivaraman, Simon Lockrey and Andrew Carre, the authors of Potential Opportunities for Increased Fuel Cell Deployment in Australia: A Ceramic Fuel Cell Case Study, said that Ceramic Fuel Cells' technology could be utilized in many ways to either help buildings earn energy and low carbon accreditation or to comply with new, green building codes.
According to the RMIT report, Ceramic Fuel Cells' technology "is a clean technology option for the future". The authors recommend that states with more carbon-intensive electricity grids such as Queensland, New South Wales, Western Australia and Victoria be targeted for fuel cell deployment.
The paper explores federal and state regulatory structures that cover a variety of buildings including homes, offices, hotels, retail outlets, schools, libraries and hospitals. These include: the National Australia Built Environment Rating System (NABERS), Green Building Council of Australia; Australian Building Codes Board: Alternate Energy Supply for Hot Water; NSW Energy Efficiency Scheme; Green Star Public Building Pilot Tool; and the NSW BASIX Program.
Under the NABERS scheme a typical
commercial building using high efficiency fuel cells to produce 100 per
cent of its electricity needs will obtain a five-star rating the
Similarly, the technology can
be used to supply hot water to different types of buildings under the
Australian building code framework. The latest Green Star Public Buildings
Tool makes a
The RMIT report is available at www.cfcl.com.au. (ASX: CFU)
However, the recapitalization will see existing shareholders significantly diluted. KKR will be issued shares at 0.53 cents each, while CMA last traded at 8.7 cents.
The Recapitalisation Proposal includes a 1-for-1 pro rata non-renounceable entitlement offer at 0.53 cents per CMA share to raise about $5 million and is expected to be fully underwritten by Morgan Stanley Australia Securities and fully sub-underwritten by nominees of KKR Asset Management (KAM).
A private placement of 4,741,298,164 CMA shares to nominees of KAM at 0.53 cents per share will raise $25 million and is also expected to be fully underwritten by Morgan Stanley and fully sub-underwritten by KAM.
If the Recapitalisation is implemented, KAM will hold a minimum of 71 per cent of CMA shares and a maximum of 85.5 per cent if no shareholders take up their entitlement.
CMA has senior debt of $120 million, with the ANZ's Advance Facility making up $96.9 million. KKR Asset Management LLC entities have acquired $81.9 million of the Advance Facility and hold more than 66.66 per cent of the debt under the Syndicated Facility.
CMA's existing financing arrangements will be restructured and involve longer term facilities. ANZ will remain the senior lender, and will provide additional working capital facilities. New facilities will be provided by financiers nominated by KAM and will be subordinated to those of ANZ.
Under a conditional agreement KAM will, among other things, provide executive and management services, finance functions and general consulting services to the CMA group.
Following the issue of shares under the Entitlement Offer and Placement, CMA proposes to consolidate its expanded share capital so that every 100 CMA shares will be converted into one share.
The Recapitalization Proposal will raise $30 million of equity, an additional $10 million working capital facility as part of the debt restructure, extend the term of CMA's facilities, enable some repayment of existing borrowings and provide debt forgiveness by nominees of KAM of approximately $17 million.
The Recapitalisation and Consolidation require CMA shareholder approval and an extraordinary general meeting is expected on or around 29 June. (ASX: CMV)
Transfield Services Infrastructure
The cash price is 85.1 cents per security.
RATCH is Thailand's leading power producer. It has a deal with Transfield Services to acquire a total of 80 per cent of TSI, with Transfield selling down to and retaining 20 per cent of the Fund.
The TSI Fund board said it has considered a number of strategies to increase security holder value over the past two years. The RATCH proposal "represents a considerable premium to recently traded prices of TSI Fund, including a 38 per cent premium to the closing price on the day prior to the announcement of the approach by RATCH."
The independent directors support the proposal, and a security holders' meeting will likely be held in late June.
An Independent Expert's Report will be sent to security holders in late May. (ASX: TSI)
Micro Cap Companies
Advanced Energy Systems
Australian Renewable Fuels
Michael Costello is chief executive of ACTew-AGL, and before that was managing director, ACTEW Corporation, deputy-managing director of the Australian Stock Exchange, and chief of staff to the Hon Kim Beazley AC, the former Labor Opposition Leader, and to the Hon Bill Hayden AC when he was the Minister for Foreign Affairs.
Mr Costello has been the secretary of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and the Department of Industrial Relations, and has held diplomatic posts including Ambassador to the United Nations. He received an Order of Australia (AO) in 1996 for international relations.
Philip Garling is global head of Infrastructure at AMP Capital Investors. He has 25 years experience in infrastructure construction, development, operations and investment management, including as chief executive officer of Tenix Infrastructure, and as the foundation chair of DUET Group where he remains a director.
Mr Garling was also a long term senior executive at Lend Lease Corporation and became chief executive of Lend Lease Capital Services, the Development Capital, Infrastructure Development and Project Finance arm of Lend Lease Capital. Mr Garling is a former member of the Federal Government Environment Industry ActionAgenda, and a former councilor of Environment Business Australia.
TIGA Trading Pty Ltd and related entities have become a substantial shareholder in Australian Renewable Fuels with 9.1 per cent of the equity. TIGA is the beneficial owner of 107.5 million shares and is related to the Thorney Investment Group Australia Pty Ltd.
The shares were acquired in March and April at 2 cents per share.
Following its recent fund raising, Australian Renewable Fuels has cash of $5.1 million at the end of the March quarter. (ASX: ARW)
The profit projections assume that clients exercise options under their current contract arrangements by October 2011, and that costs, fees and other expenses remain within budget expectations.
The company made its first profit, of $317,000, in 2009-10. (ASX: CCF)
At the same time as the announcement, Carbon Polymer's shares fell from 39.5 cents to 33.5 cents. (ASX: CBP)
Carnegie Wave Energy
The company had earlier announced that its commercial scale CETO 3 unit had completed its initial operational run successfully with results in line with expectations across a range of sea states including 1 metre to 4.6 metre wave heights.
The company will now advance to the commercial demonstration project stage, including finalizing the design for the grid connected project. Final site selection for the project will be made over the coming months.
Managing director Dr Michael Ottaviano said "We're very pleased with the performance of the CETO 3 unit. We now have an enormous amount of data that the Carnegie team is now analyzing which will allow us to validate our computational models and which in turn allows the finalisation of the design for our grid connected demonstration project."
A video of the system in operation is available on Carnegie's website. (ASX: CWE)
It has raised $5.5 million via a placement to professional and sophisticated investors, largely existing shareholders, at 65 cents per share. The price was an 11 per cent discount to the company's 30 day volume weighted average share price.
Dyesol will offer a share purchase plan to all shareholders at the same price and volume terms as the placement.
Dyesol has also entered an agreement with Springtree Special Opportunities Fund, LP under which SpringTree can invest between $15.2 million and $22.4 million in Dyesol over the next three years in monthly instalments.
The agreement is structured to provide funding flexibility, and minimize dilution to existing shareholders while relating to the share price at the time of each monthly investment, said Dyesol. The company can terminate the agreement at any time at no cost if the price is below a specified level or after 12 months, or otherwise at a small break fee.
SpringTree will invest $400,000 to $600,000 in Dyesol's shares approximately monthly. At SpringTree's election, each purchase will be made at either 130 per cent of the average of the daily volume-weighted average prices of Dyesol's shares for the 20 trading days before the execution date of the Agreement, or 90 per cent of the average of three daily volume-weighted average prices during a specified period before the issue of the shares.
Dyesol can elect to refuse to issue shares if the price is lower than a specified floor price. (ASX: DYE)
The company had cash on 1 May of $390,000 and no third party debt. (ASX: ECQ)
The SCPPA call option to purchase the first planned EnviroMission Solar Tower was a term of the 21 October 2010, SCPPA Power Purchase Agreement (PPA). EnviroMission said details of the PPA remained commercial in confidence' pending completion of the Power Sales Agreement (PSA) negotiation with SCPPA member utilities intent on taking power allocations under the PPA.
The commercial in confidence' PSA negotiation process has now been ratified between SCPPA and participating SCPPA member utilities.
SCPPA has the right to purchase the first Solar Tower facility at the 10 or 30 year anniversary of operation at "Fair Market Value" or the "amount of outstanding debt" whichever is greater at the time of execution of the option.
SCPPA has also taken a call option on a second Power Purchase Agreement to buy the power from a second 200 MW La Paz Solar Tower. The second SCPPA option will provide SCPPA and its members the right to enter into a PPA for a second 200 MW Solar Tower at anytime during the first five years of the initial SCPPA agreement that would result in a 400 MW PPA.
SCPPA is a California joint power authority consisting of eleven municipal utilities and one irrigation district. Its members deliver electricity to 2 million metered accounts and a population of nearly 5 million people over 7,000 square miles.
EnviroMission chief executive, Roger Davey, said "Solar Tower operation and maintenance modeling is projected to have a strong commercial advantage that will also be a first from a solar technology engineered to be predictable and not reliant on co-generation resources such as water or gas."
"The unique characteristics of Solar Tower electricity generation were factors in the SCPPA PPA decision for increased sustainable renewable energy generation in the SCPPA portfolio mix.
"California has the most aggressive renewable energy mandate in the United States that requires Californian utilities and other electricity providers to generate 33 per cent of their power from renewable energy sources by 2020." (ASX: EVM)
The deal sees Transcor subscribe for 22 million European Gas shares at 50 cents each, and receive a 12 month option for another 22 million shares at 50 cents. Transcor now holds 11 per cent of European Gas.
European Gas will sell its shares in Gazonor, and its 50 per cent interest in European Gas Benelux, to Transcor. It grants Transcor the right of first refusal over any coal bed methane, tight or shale oil or gas projects in the Benelux area sourced by European Gas Benelux. It is also entering farm out joint operating agreements with Gazonor for the Sud Midi and Valenciennois exploration permits and a production sharing agreement for the Poissonniere and Desiree production permits.
European Gas is now "well positioned to explore and develop its large portfolio of prospective assets in a very favourable gas market in Europe," said Transcor.
European Gas' shares remain suspended while it works on other tasks including the conversion of an unsecured loan. (ASX: EPG)
The Energy Savings scheme places a mandatory obligation on Scheme participants such as electricity retailers to obtain and surrender Energy Savings Certificates (ESCs), which represent eligible energy savings under the scheme. Scheme participants purchase the certificates from Accredited Certificates Providers, who create the certificates through energy savings activities.
Greenearth Energy Efficiency won its accreditation for Recognised Energy Savings Activity (RESA) for its High Intensity Discharge (HID) lighting equipment upgrade. Greenearth Energy Efficiency focuses on providing energy efficiency upgrades for the industrial, outdoor, and large big box commercial' HID lighting systems markets utilizing technology from its Israeli-based partner, Metrolight. It provides the core electronic HID technology, sensors, control systems, and turnkey commissioning of systems for new or retrofit installations.
Greenearth Energy Efficiency is now capable of producing energy saving certificates, managing the governance and administration requirements associated with this activity and trading the certificates to scheme participants for eligible NSW projects.
Managing director of Greenearth Energy, Mark Miller, said "By earning Energy Savings Certificates we are able to offer our clients improved financial returns as well as improving the uptake of our solutions.
"Further RESA's may be added that could include projects from lighting upgrades using different technologies, or projects from other Greenearth Energy subsidiary companies including waste heat recovery projects initiated by Pacific Heat and Power (PHP), or potentially solar hot water upgrades using our Greenearth Solar Energy technology, ZenithSolar."
Greenearth Energy has appointed
Jim Lawless as Independent Geothermal Energy Advisor to the board. Mr
Lawless has over 30 years geothermal industry experience, including
During his last 10 years with SKM, Mr Lawless supported a number of Australian geothermal developers, including Greenearth Energy's applications for Commonwealth and State Government grants for the Geelong Geothermal Power Project (GGPP), Australia's most awarded Hot Sedimentary Aquifer (HSA) geothermal project.
He has also provided consulting services to the Australian Government in the development of The Australian Code for Reporting of Exploration Results, Geothermal Resources and Geothermal Reserves.
Mr Miller said "Jim is widely recognised as one the world's most respected geothermal practitioners." (ASX: GER)
If Phase 2 confirms the technical and economical feasibility, Phase 3 will involve the construction of a full-scale spent pickle liquor recycling project at GBG's operating site in Victoria, for the recycling of a minimum of 1 million litres per annum.
The plant will have an expected capital cost of less than $2 million, and represent a further step in the diversion of useable metal resources away from landfill, said Intec.
Spent pickle liquor from the galvanizing industry contains zinc, iron, and hydrochloric acid.
Intec has also completed a provisional market study for further spent pickle liquor recycling opportunities. Intec's technology appears to be unique in Australia for the recycling of zinc-bearing spent pickle liquor from the batch hot-dip zinc galvanizing industry, it said. Current information suggests that all of these useable liquid wastes in Australia are currently treated, stabilised' and sent to landfill.
"Even internationally, Intec could find virtually no competing technologies for the recycling of this type of zinc-bearing liquid acid waste' derived from batch hot-dip galvanizing operations. There are numerous alternatives both within Australia and abroad for reuse or recycling of the similarly-named (and essentially zinc-free) spent pickle liquor from continuous galvanising operations that is not relevant to Intec's technology, but few identified options for the specific zinc-bearing material that is Intec's target market," said Intec. (ASX: INL)
John Evans is the new independent chairman, following the resignation of Andrew Plympton. Mr Evans' areas of expertise are in strategic business planning and advising, and in finance. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) degree, and is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia, and a member of CPA Australia and the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
He has held a number of public and private directorships in a range of industries including property development, healthcare, mining services, legal services, and employment and training. Mr Evans is currently a non-executive director of MediVac and HealthLinx, and chairs the Audit & Risk Committees of both companies.
Bob Gestro has returned to the Intermoco board as a non-executive director. He has previously served as executive chairman of Intermoco from February 2009 to April 2010, and has over 25 years experience in energy and water service companies. (ASX: INT)
Island Sky chairman David Lindh said negotiations are continuing to raise further funds and the company anticipates being able to update the market later this month.
But there are other positive factors to be taken into account, he said. The company's US subsidiary has received a large order from its Philippines distributor and the receipt of the funds is due within days.
The company has inventory on hand valued at US$1 million and this constitutes a source of working capital, and proposed product developments have received good responses from potential markets.
Consideration is being given to the possibility of finding a joint venture partner for the US subsidiary who can provide sufficient working capital to assist with the business development of products. "This may involve the company reducing its equity in its wholly owned subsidiary but will reduce the requirement for it to fund more capital expenditure." (ASX: ISK)
Liquefied Natural Gas
The deal, consistent with the Term Sheet of 27 January this year, sees HQCEC subscribe for 53,250,000 shares or about 19.9 per cent of LNG Ltd. The price is the lesser of 48 cents per share (about $25.6 million), or 80 per cent of the volume weighted average market price of LNG's shares over the five days before the placement date.
The placement proceeds are for the development of LNG's wholly owned 3 million tonne per annum Fisherman's Landing LNG Project at Gladstone in Queensland.
Subject to the provision of an ASX waiver, HQCEC will have the right to subscribe for further LNG shares from time to time at market share prices to preserve its percentage shareholding if any existing securities which are convertible into LNG shares are converted within five years of the placement.
HQCEC or one of its affiliates or CNPC will be the sole Engineering, Procurement, Construction and Commissioning (EPC) contractor for the Fisherman's Landing LNG Project, conditional on HQCEC providing a competitive EPC proposal based on LNG's OSMR LNG process technology.
Subject to agreement, HQCEC, CNPC and their affiliates will have the right to use LNG's OSMR LNG process technology worldwide on preferential terms.
CNPC or an affiliate will have consideration to be involvement in the Fisherman's Landing Project, including the purchase of all or part of the proposed initial 3 million tonne per annum LNG production capacity on preferential terms and provision, or arranging, of debt financing for the development of the project.
Subject to shareholder approval, two HQCEC nominees will join the LNG Board.
Madam Wang Xinge will be appointed as an executive director of LNG and co chief executive officer to work with managing director/ chief executive officer, Maurice Brand.
Zhang Gaowu will be a non-executive director. He is the deputy director of the Finance & Asset Management Division of HQCEC.
Completion of the placement is conditional on certain matters including final approval from CNPC, approval from the Ministry of Commerce and the National Development and Reform Commission of China, and LNG shareholder approval at a general meeting scheduled for 7 June 2011. (ASX: LNG)
The contract commences this month and should continue through the second quarter of 2012 subject to an initial three-month trial.
"This is the culmination of two years of work by the Mission team in collaboration with International Sustainability & Carbon Certification System (ISCC) and FELDA. We are really proud to become the only certified supplier of palm-based products into the European market. It has opened a new market for us and we are currently in negotiations with several other buyers for our certified product," said Nathan Mahalingam, Group chief executive of Mission.
"We expect sales under this contract, and others under negotiation, to absorb all of the ISCC-certified feedstock that FELDA can supply to Mission over the next year," he said.
In early March, Mission announced that it had established Asia's first fully integrated ISCC certified palm biodiesel supply and production chain, in collaboration with FELDA, a Malaysian government corporation and one of the world's largest palm oil producers.
Mission and FELDA are working to extend the certification program to additional FELDA mills and plantations, further expanding the available supply of ISCC certified product through Mission's refineries and creating opportunities for further Mission revenue growth.
Meanwhile, Mission has sold a further 280 barrels or 38 tonnes of unrefined Jatropha oil to a new customer in southeast Asia. The Jatropha Oil was sold for over US$145 per barrel with the cost, insurance and freight paid by the client.
"We continue to see robust demand in the global market for unrefined Jatropha oil. We expect that we will continue to be able to sell all of the Jatropha oil that we can produce at premium prices to crude oil" said Nathan Mahalingam, Group chief executive of Mission. "We believe that the substantial premium for crude Jatropha oil relative to crude oil, is the result of the global shortage of sustainable biofuels oils."
Over the next 30 years, the existing acreage under cultivation by Mission's farmers is expected to produce 22 million barrels, or an estimated $3 billion worth of sustainable non-food oil supply at today's selling price, said the company. (ASX: MBT)
The study highlights strong project fundamentals with a very large resource base to support a long project life, low operating costs for battery grade lithium carbonate at the low end of the global cost curve, high quality and conservatively derived results give a strong technical and commercial basis for project, and a strong pricing outlook for lithium and potash.
The Olaroz Project has a large resource base of 6.4 million tonnes of lithium carbonate equivalent. The study provides a conservative initial production rate of 16,400 tonnes per annum of battery grade lithium carbonate production with an option to produce 10,000 tonnes of potash per annum two years after the start of lithium carbonate production.
"The DFS highlights the Olaroz Project's very low operating cash cost of US$1,512 per tonne for battery grade lithium carbonate without a potash credit. This cost estimate is competitive with existing brine producers and materially less than those reported by hard rock lithium minerals projects," sais the company.
The estimated capital cost for a 16,400 tonne per annum lithium carbonate plant is $206.7 million with another $14.6 million for the Potash Plant option.
The engineering design and cost estimate for the definitive Feasibility Study was undertaken by Sinclair Knight Merz. The resource estimate and process design engineering was undertaken by Consulting Hydrogeologist, John Houston and Consulting Processing Engineer, Peter Ehren.
Orocobre said it will now work with its partner Toyota Tsusho Corporation to finalize the Joint Venture Agreement and financing to progress the project to commercial production following receipt of final provincial government approvals.
Richard Seville, managing director and chief executive officer of Orocobre, said the DFS highlights that Olaroz is poised to be the world's next low cost, high grade lithium carbonate project. (ASX: ORE)
The test results were significant, said Papyrus, as they confirm that the Papyrus method of making panel is on the right track and provides valuable guidance to the Papyrus team developing the product.
Colin Wyllie, general manager Production & Sales, said the test results are encouraging. "I now look forward to developing our panel over the next few weeks to produce a product that is capable of entering the market as an environmentally friendly board suitable for many applications."
The unique feature about Papyrus' method of making banana fibre panel is that the bonding process is formaldehyde free and the adhesives used are plant based only. Additionally banana fibre is water-resistant, fire-resistant, stronger and lighter than most conventional fibre-based products, and does not transmit moisture, grease or solvents.
The first round of independent testing was to establish a benchmark from which Papyrus can then adjust its recipes and method to enhance the banana fibre panel product for the construction and furniture industries. The testing regime included the panel moisture content, density, elasticity and bend strength, tensile strength, swelling and resistance to axial withdrawal of screws. (ASX: PPY)
At the end of the March quarter Torrens had cash of $3.3 million. Despite this, "The March quarter was one of consolidation, with Torrens Energy reviewing its land positions and associated expenditure commitments with a view to deferring field operations and reducing overall expenditures," it said.
"The market conditions for the geothermal exploration sector in Australia, as well as the renewable sector as a whole, are currently unfavourable with investor sentiment at a low level. Consequently Torrens Energy has reviewed its Australian licence holdings and is reducing work programs and surrendering non-core licences.
"This has meant the deferral of proof-of-concept drilling and related activities until future funding arrangements are clarified. This will result in a significant reduction in cash outflows and preservation of working capital."
Torrens has geothermal positions in South Australia and Victoria with 11 licences for 23,000 square kilometres. It has the largest land position in South Australia of 13,845 square kilometres. (ASX: TeQ)
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