Eco Investor Update

A Weekly News Update for Environmental Investors

7 November 2011 - No 56

ASX 100

APA Group
APA Group has entered new syndicated debt facilities totaling $1.45 billion to complete its current debt refinancing program.

The new facilities will refinance a $900 million syndicated bank debt facility due in June 2012 and enable the early refinancing of the $515 million facility due in July 2013.

APA said the transaction means it has no further debt refinancing obligations until the maturity of a $113 million tranche of its 2003 USPP in September 2013.

The new facilities are available in three equal tranches of $483 million over terms of two, three and four years.

The facilities were provided by a syndicate of 15 domestic and foreign banks, and were oversubscribed almost three times with the initial launch at $500 million.

APA chief financial officer, Peter Fredricson said "We took advantage of this excellent opportunity to refinance both our 2012 and 2013 debt at pricing that ultimately delivers a considerable benefit to APA security holders, through the interest cost savings that we will experience over the next two years in particular."

APA said it is confident the interest cost for the current financial year will come in at a level below the low end of guidance.

APA's security price continues to trade at a four year high of up to $4.45. (ASX: APA)

DUET Group
A decision by the Australian Energy Regulator in regard to United Energy is inline with expectations while a decision by the Economic Regulation Authority (ERA) of Western Australia in regard to the Dampier to Bunbury Natural Gas Pipeline (DBNGP) may be appealed.

The Australian Energy Regulator's final decision for United Energy's Advanced Metering Infrastructure 2012-2015 delivers a budget in line with UE's forecast operating and capital expenditure requirements to deliver the AMI rollout program, said DUET.

The Economic Regulation Authority (ERA) of WA's Final Access Arrangement Decision for the DBNGP is not expected to impact DBP's revenues over the 2011-2015 period as DBP will continue to operate under existing negotiated tariffs.

Tariffs for the 2016-20 period will be determined as part of the next regulatory decision to be published in 2015.

DUET said DBP will review the ERA's Access Arrangement counterproposal (due by the end of 2011) with a view to a possible appeal before the Australian Competition Tribunal. (ASX: DUE)

ASX 200

Dart Energy
Dart Energy is to degas for mine safety reasons one of Tata Steel's active coal mines in Jharia Coalfield, Jharkhand, India. Subject to commercial negotiations, Dart Energy and Tata Steel will explore opportunities to degas coal mine methane from other coal mines owned by Tata Steel aimed at making mining safer, environmentally beneficial and realizing economic value from the gas produced.

Tata Steel is a leading global steel producer and part of India's largest private sector.

Dart Energy said it continues to devote considerable time and resource to grass-roots communication and engagement with local communities in NSW as well as participation in industry forums and groups.

"Dart Energy's focus is on clearly articulating what Dart Energy considers to be the benefits, risks and optimal future industry regulation for the CBM industry in NSW, and Australia more broadly," it said. (ASX: DTE)

Eastern Star Gas
The Federal Court has approved Eastern Star Gas's scheme of arrangement where shareholders approved the company's takeover by Santos. Eastern Star Gas' shares ceased trading in 3 November. The takeover will be implemented on 17 November.

Envestra has raised $25.2 million with 3,200 shareholders having participated in the company's Security Purchase Plan. 39.3 million new shares will be issued.

On 18 October the company raised $25.7 million via its dividend reinvestment plan.

The issue price for the share purchase plan and dividend reinvestment plan was 64 cents per share.

The company will use the capital to partly fund its $200 million capital expenditure program in 2011-12.

The company now has 1.55 billion shares on issue. Envestra's largest shareholder, the APA Group, holds 506.8 million shares (32.7 per cent) and the second largest shareholder, Cheung Kong Infrastructure Group, holds 297.5 million shares (19.2 per cent).

Two directors participated in the dividend reinvestment plan. (ASX: ENV)

Qube Logistics
Qube has expressed its intention to further develop its rail freight business, saying it is more environmentally friendly than road transport.

"Qube is very focused on increasing rail's share of container freight movements to and from ports as this provides significant benefits to Qube's customers as well as being more environmentally friendly than road transport," says its latest shareholder report.

"Qube has grown its rail business in the past year and is looking forward to taking delivery of additional locomotives and wagons during the next six months to further grow its rail business. We continue to see significant opportunities to provide competitive and reliable logistics solutions involving rail transport in conjunction with other logistics services for the movement of containers, rural and bulk products."

The rail business is part of Qube's Landside Logistics Division, one of the largest providers of container logistics services to shipping lines, retailers and wholesalers through sites in all major capital cities and major regional areas. The business currently trades under the P&O Trans Australia brand with the rail operations trading as Qube Rail.

Among other benefits the acquisition of Mackenzie Intermodal in July 2011 provided Qube with additional terminal facilities for its rail business.

Qube's Strategic Development Assets division comprises Qube's 30 per cent interest in the Moorebank Industrial Property Trust and 100 per cent of a strategically located property at Minto in Sydney's south west. Both properties are adjacent to the dedicated Southern Sydney Freight Line presently being constructed.

The assets are leased to generate income while Qube undertakes the planning and obtains the development approvals to transform the assets into operating logistics properties predominantly involving inland rail terminals and related logistics activities.

Qube said a detailed environmental report was recently submitted to the NSW Government as part of the Moorebank planning approval process. For the property at Minto, approval was recently granted for Qube to construct a rail turn-out from its property to the Southern Sydney Freight Line. (ASX: QUB)

Transpacific Industries Group
The retail component of Transpacific Industries entitlement offer will now be fully underwritten. This follows the completion of the institutional component of entitlement offer, which received strong support from new and existing investors.

The institutional offer had 97 per cent take-up excluding Warburg Pincus and the Peabody Family. Warburg Pincus took up its full $104.7 million entitlement. The issue price is 50 cents per share, and the shortfall achieved a clearing price of 62 cents per share in the bookbuild.

The retail offer is underwritten by the joint lead managers, who have sub-underwritten the commitment. Warburg Pincus, Transpacific's largest shareholder, has not participated in the sub-underwriting of the retail offer.

The retail offer will raise $42 million and together with the $267 million institutional offer will raise approximately $309 million.

The Goldman Sachs Group has become a substantial shareholder in Transpacific with 5.8 per cent interest. (ASX: TPI)

ASX 300

Ceramic Fuel Cells
Ceramic Fuel Cells is working towards a large scale manufacturing agreement with a global electronics manufacturer, and has won a 2011 Banksia Environment Award.

The company has agreed a Manufacturing Services Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with New York Stock Exchange listed Jabil Circuit Inc. This will see the partners work to scale up the manufacture of Ceramic Fuel Cells' Gennex fuel cell module and BlueGen electricity generation product. They also want to quickly reduce unit costs while maintaining quality and security of supply.

Jabil is a global electronic manufacturing service provider with 55 factories in 22 countries and annual revenue of US$16 billion. Its global cleantech business unit makes a range of energy products including solar panels, smartgrid meters and wind turbines.

The first phase of co-operation, expected to begin in early 2012, is for Ceramic Fuel Cells to source some components from Jabil. The second phase is to source major sub-assemblies from Jabil. The final phase is for Jabil to assemble finished products as a contract manufacturer.

Ceramic Fuel Cells will retain control of fuel cell stack manufacturing and all related intellectual property, while progressively outsourcing the manufacturing and supply of components, sub-assemblies and the mass manufactured BlueGen product.

Managing director Brendan Dow said "Over the past year our order book has grown from 50 units to 500 units and we need to plan ahead for much larger volumes in the coming years. Working with an expert contract manufacturer will help us to increase our volumes and reduce our unit costs much faster than trying to do it all ourselves."

Outsourced electronic manufacturing has grown substantially in the past 20 years and has been a key driver in expanding the volumes and reducing the costs of consumer and
household electronic items, he said. This outsourced model is now being adopted in other industries such as clean energy technologies.

Ceramic Fuel Cells won the Clean Technology - Harnessing Opportunities Award at this year's Banksia Environmental Awards.

The award is for "leadership and innovation in removing climate, wastes and water impacts through the development and application of innovations that use new approaches, technologies and/ or energy systems for business and community benefit".

58 finalists were selected for ten award categories.

Mr Dow said the award was further vindication of his company's environmental credentials.

The award brings to five the number of awards won by Ceramic Fuel Cells this year. The company also won the Climate Alliance Limited Innovator of the Year Award, the DuPont Design for a Sustainable Future Innovation Award, the Microgeneration UK Technical Innovation Award, and the Minerals and Energy category at the Governor of Victoria Export Awards. (ASX: CFU)

Infigen Energy
Infigen Energy has received Project Approval from the NSW Planning Assessment Commission for its proposed Capital 2 wind farm.

The proposed Capital 2 wind farm will consist of 41 wind turbines and be a significant addition to Infigen's existing Capital wind farm. This ‘Renewable Energy Precinct' currently consists the 140.7 MW Capital wind farm and 48.3 MW Woodlawn wind farm.

Infigen said its extensive community consultation process combined with the community engagement undertaken in developing the Capital Renewable Energy Precinct has led to strong local support for the project. The Capital 2 wind farm would lead to significant investment in the regional economy.

Construction could improve economies of scale for Infigen's operations in the area and reduce operating costs on a per megawatt basis.

A final investment decision for Capital 2 wind farm is yet to be considered by the board. (ASX: IFN)

Tox Free Solutions
Tox Free Solutions has had the conversion of 1,083,500 November 2011 options at $2.07 each and 40,000 July 2012 options at $ 1.80 each.

The November options raised $2.24 million and the July 2012 options raised $72,000.

25,000 November 2011 options exercisable at $ 2.07 each lapsed unexercised.

The company said that following these conversions and lapses, it has 4,138,500 employee options on issue that expire at various prices and dates. (ASX: TOX)

Emerging Companies

Clean TeQ Holdings
Clean TeQ Holdings has terminated its convertible loan agreement with La Jolla Cove Investors Inc. (LJCI).

The LJCI agreement was to provide four convertible notes of $1.5 million each to Clean TeQ. The first note has completed and the second note has been partially drawn down.

Clean TeQ said it will utilize the funds from its recent rights issue to repay the outstanding principal on the second convertible note of approximately $584,000. With the 5 per cent contracted premium and accrued interest, the total amount payable is approximately $617,000. This will be settled in cash.

The remainder of the second note will not be drawn down and will be cancelled. The convertible loan agreement will be cancelled and LJCI will have no further right to purchase the remaining two notes from Clean TeQ.

Following the repayment of the second note Clean TeQ will be materially debt free. Its share price has also begun to recover, and at around 5 cents is at a four month high. (ASX: CLQ)

DoloMatrix International
DoloMatrix International Group has had its household chemical waste collection contract with the NSW Office of Environment & Heritage (OEH) renewed for three years to 30 June 2014, with two 12-month further options.

Sustainability Victoria has also extended the Household Chemical Disposal Service with DoloMatrix to 30 June 2012.

DoloMatrix said it holds existing contracts with the Local Government Association of Tasmania), Western Australia Local Government Association, and Gold Coast City Council and Logan City Council in Queensland.

These mandates confirm DoloMatrix, through its subsidiaries Chemsal and BCD Technologies, as the industry leader in the growing household chemical waste sector, it said.

The company has technologies for the destruction of environmentally hazardous wastes, and the resource recovery of fluorescent and halogen lamps, discarded metal and plastic packaging. It also offers recycling and chemical handling services to industry and government. (ASX: DMX)

Energy Developments
Energy Developments and Enerji are to assess the viability of Enerji's waste heat recovery system at sites nominated by Energy Developments and at new sites for which it is submitting tenders or proposals.

Energy Developments has a remote energy business with more than 275 MW of installed capacity at 32 remote sites. The two companies will do site by site assessments for the suitability of Enerji's Opcon Powerbox units that capture waste heat.

Where a site is commercially viable both parties will negotiate a binding supply agreement. Enerji's says its preliminary estimate shows the potential for at least 10 Opcon Powerboxes over the next two to three years, with some sites having capacity for multiple Opcon Powerboxes. See under Enerji for further details.

In a letter to some shareholders about its entitlement offer, Energy Developments says its international portfolio of landfill gas, waste coal mine gas, natural gas and liquefied natural gas power stations produced 3.1 million MWh of clean energy in 2010-11. These abated and avoided greenhouse gases estimated at 9.7 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent, akin to removing 2.7 million cars from the road.

In Australia, it produced 2.3 million MWh of clean energy, and abated and avoided 5.8 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent, comparable to removing about 1.5 million cars from the roads. (ASX: ENE)

Environmental Group
The NSW Supreme Court has delivered a decision about the dispute between EGL Management Services (EGLMS), a subsidiary of The Environmental Group, and Unitywater, where EGLMS sought Unitywater to account for money it received under Performance Bonds and other security held.

The Justice found that Unitywater holds the cash proceeds of the Bonds of $1 million and other bank guarantees as security under EGLMS's contract with Unitywater. Unitywater is not required to repay the proceeds of conversion of the Bonds until the question of alleged breach of the contract between EGLMS and Unitywater has been resolved. But Unitywater must provide an explanation or reckoning of what it has done with the proceeds of the converted Bonds. EGLMS's summons was dismissed with costs.

Both parties can appeal within 28 days.

EGLMS is in a long standing dispute with Unitywater. In July 2011, Unitywater gave notice of default to EGLMS. That default notice must be addressed by EGLMS by 8 November 2011 by either remedying the alleged defaults or showing cause why Unitywater should not exercise its rights under the contract if the alleged defaults were not rectified. EGLMS continues to operate and maintain the Redcliffe Wastewater Treatment Plant for Unitywater.

Environmental Group chairman John Read has indirectly acquired 500,000 shares for $25,000, an average price of 5 cents. (ASX: EGL)

ERM Power
ERM Power's electricity sales subsidiary, ERM Sales, has signed a $150 million financing agreement with Macquarie Bank.

Managing director Philip St Baker said the agreement would significantly improve capital efficiency and growth headroom for ERM Sales, and boost working capital at group level.

"The agreement includes a receivables financing facility, bank guarantee facilities to support Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) and third party obligations, and a suite of electricity industry specific financing facilities," he said.

ERM Power says it is on track to deliver over 50 per cent growth in electricity sales revenue this year including 25 per cent geographical sales diversification as it deploys its large customer business model across Australia.

"This financing agreement is a significant next step for ERM Power and lays the foundations for the next phase of substantial growth for the company," said Mr St Baker. (ASX: EPW)

Gale Pacific
Gale Pacific's first quarter results have been positive despite a very difficult trading environment and the company anticipates a further increase in earnings per share during the current financial year, said chairman David Allman.

The company is aiming to increase earnings per share through investment which generates strong profitability and cash flow.

Gale Pacific's shares hit a one year high of 25.5 cents on 31 October.

Director John Murray has indirectly acquired 190,905 shares for $40,090, an average price of 21 cents. (ASX: GAP)

Greencap director Earl Eddings has indirectly acquired 70,000 shares for $3,500, a average price of 5 cents. (ASX: GCG)

Micro Cap Companies

Australian Renewable Fuels
TIGA Trading Pty Ltd has increased its interest in Australian Renewable Fuels from 8.05 per cent to 9.28 per cent. TIGA is associated with Thorney Investment Group Australia Pty Ltd. (ASX: ARW)

Clean Seas Tuna
Clean Seas Tuna aims to raise up to $5 million through a share purchase plan.

The capital will help fund its Southern Blue Fin Tuna (SBT) cultivation program including a revised spawning program and stage II marine grow-out trials at the company's Arno Bay aquaculture breeding facility in South Australia.

Shareholders have the option of subscribing for $1,000, $2,500, $7,500 or $15,000 for shares at 8 cents each. Although the shares were trading at above 9 cents, they fell to a one year low of 7.9 cents after the announcement of the raising.

The funds will supplement the $7.3 million in cash the company had at 39 September.

Chairman, John Ellice-Flint, said the company's Yellowtail Kingfish spawning program has been advanced by nearly two months which will enable the early transfer of all Yellowtail Kingfish fingerlings to sea cages.

This should enable improved growth from its Kingfish juveniles and improve overall survival, along with better meeting customer weight preferences on a more consistent basis throughout the harvest season.

"It will also clear the way for our specialist personnel being totally dedicated to the SBT spawning and fingerling production from December 2011 and beyond with spawning scheduled to begin some six weeks earlier than the prior season," he said.

It is anticipated that this revised schedule will enable the transfer of SBT fingerlings to at-sea cages at optimum sea temperatures within the summer, assisting juvenile growth with greater resilience towards survival through the 2012 winter season.

Peter Housden has withdrawn his nomination for reappointment as a director. (ASX: CSS)

EcoQuest reported receipts from customers of $39,000 for the September quarter. Net operating cash flows were minus $448,000. Cash at the end of the quarter was a mere $17,000. On 18 October it raised $100,902 from sophisticated investors, and says further financing is under negotiation. (ASX: ECQ).

Eden Energy
Eden Energy is undertaking a non-renounceable pro-rata rights offer at 5 cents per share. Shareholders will be offered two shares for every seven, together with a free attaching option to acquire one share at 20 cents any time up to 30 June 2014.

Eden said its US subsidiary, Hythane Company, has had encouraging results on its research involving concrete reinforced with carbon nano-fibers and carbon nano-tubes.

Preliminary concrete test results in certain concrete formulations are showing a very encouraging increase in flexural strength ranging from 15-30 per cent at seven days of age, it said. Preliminary 28 day test results will be available in the next few weeks.

Increased flexural strength is desirable as it allows for reduced concrete beam dimensions which can reduce overall building heights due to thinner floor depths. Also, the increase in flexural strength can reduce the amount of steel reinforcement to support the same structural load, which can reduce material costs.

"This is an encouraging development in Eden's quest to find suitable large scale applications for its carbon nanotube and carbon nanofibres, and will hopefully lead to a new, large scale
application that can be commercialized after suitable testwork has been completed," said chairman, Gregory Solomon. (ASX: EDE)

Enerji and Energy Developments are to assess the viability of Enerji's waste heat recovery system at existing sites nominated by Energy Developments and new sites for which its submitting tenders or proposals.

Energy Developments is Australia's largest independent remote energy business in the 1 to 100 MW field. It has more than 275 MW of installed capacity at 32 remote sites.

The two companies will do site by site assessments for the suitability of Enerji's Opcon Powerbox units that capture waste heat.

If a site is found to be commercially viable for both parties then negotiations for a binding supply agreement will commence. Enerji's preliminary estimate shows the potential for over 10 Opcon Powerboxes over the next two to three years, with some sites having capacity for multiple Opcon Powerboxes in the near term.

Enerji chief executive, Greg Pennefather, said "This Memorandum of Understanding represents a great opportunity for Enerji to work with an industry leader and specialist in remote energy. It presents the scope for the company to scale its business in its target market sector. This is the culmination of more than a year's work and clearly demonstrates our ability to build the necessary relationships in this business."

The company has ordered six Opcon Powerboxes. This agreement with Energy Developments and the recently announced MoU with Poseidon Nickel, together with the other sales prospects Enerji is pursuing, have the potential to use the ordered units.

The company said it is targeting to be operationally cash flow positive from when the fourth Opcon Powerbox is installed and commissioned. (ASX: ERJ)

European Gas
European Gas said it is preparing for new ventures that will diversify its operations to other countries of Europe beyond the development of its French coal bed methane assets, and in other geological plays than coal bed methane.

"As such, the company is pursuing Tight Gas Sands and Tight Oil Sands opportunities in other European countries, including Turkey, both from a Joint Venture or acreage acquisition perspective," it said.

The company's interest in "Tight Oil' is a concern from an environmental commitment point of view. Eco Investor will monitor any developments and cease coverage of the company if it moves into oil.

The company already receives a small royalty income stream from oil under two royalty agreements with Buru Energy Ltd for its former Canning Basin assets in WA.

On 18 October Buru reported flows of light oil out of its Ungani 1ST1 well, and a follow-up appraisal well is planned. That well is located in Exploration Permit EP 391 and the permit is within the royalty area covered by one of the company's royalty agreements with Buru. Subject to the terms of the agreement, it would be entitled to a royalty of 2 per cent of the well head value of petroleum recovered from the area.

To diversify its coal bed methane activities, it is pursuing two joint ventures opportunities in Germany and Belgium. (ASX: EPG)

Green Rock Energy
Green Rock Energy and unlisted fellow WA geothermal explorer New World Energy are to merge their geothermal exploration permits in the Mid West region of the state, with each company acquiring 50 per cent interest in the other company's permits and contributing equally to project funding.

Green Rock will operate the joint venture, which will seek to establish a grid-connected geothermal demonstration project.

"This mutually beneficial joint venture will create a single entity with access to the best geothermal areas in WA that are adjacent to transmission infrastructure and major baseload energy markets," said John Libby, managing director of New World Energy. It will also allow both companies to pool their technical and financial resources and be more cost effective.

Green Rock's managing director Richard Beresford said "Green Rock considers the Mid West Geothermal Power Project a strong contender for State and Commonwealth funding towards drilling the first two wells. Working jointly with New World Energy further strengthens our prospects and we look forward to further progress on funding over the next few months." (ASX: GRK)

Greenearth Energy
Greenearth Energy is set to receive up to $25 million in funding from the Victorian Government to help fund its flagship conventional geothermal project, the Geelong Geothermal Power Project (GGPP).

Negotiations for the funding, that was awarded in December 2009 under the government's Energy Technology Innovation Strategy (ETIS), have now been concluded.

The funding is to assist two stages of the GGPP development - $5 million towards establishing proof of resource, with another $20 million for a 12 MWe demonstration on a successful proof of concept.

Proof of resource will involve the drilling of an initial well to approximately 4,000 metres and conducting a short term flow test to analyze the results for temperature, geothermal fluid flow rate and formation permeability. The $5 million grant funding will be applied to assist completion of this stage.

On establishing suitable resource parameters, a second well will be drilled to produce a "couplet" and establish proof of concept and allow for an extended flow test to allow extensive analysis of the commercial viability of the resource and construction of a 12 MWe demonstration plant.

The separate tranches will be paid on the achievement of milestones and are subject to conditions precedent including securing the necessary project funds to complete each stage.

Greenearth Energy is continuing discussions with Alcoa of Australia about areas of potential collaboration and undertaking community consultation about the selection of a suitable site for Stage 1 and Stage 2.

Managing director Mark Miller said "We will now seek support from the Australian Government in the form of an application to the newly announced Emerging Renewables program for support for Stage 1 of the GGPP." (ASX: GER)

Hot Rock
Hot Rock is undertaking a share purchase plan to fund field and community consultation activities for future geological, geochemical and geophysical programs in Chile and Peru; to investigate additional geothermal project opportunities in Chile and Peru; and
for working capital.

Shareholders will be able to subscribe for up to $15,000 of shares 2.5 cents each, the same price as the recent placement to institutional and sophisticated investors. The raising is not underwritten. (ASX: HRL)

Hydrotech International
Hydrotech International's Hong Kong based coatings subsidiary, Hydrotech Waterproofing Solutions, has won a project to replace the roof waterproofing for the Canadian Consulate's Official Residence in Hong Kong. The value of this project is $140,000. (ASX: HTI)

Utilities management provider, Intermoco, has another three agreements for new Intermoco Connect Sites in NSW and Victoria.

The first is a five year contract for embedded electricity network services at the Pentridge Piazza development in Melbourne's north. Pentridge Piazza is part of what is said to be one of Melbourne's premier high density living environments, which has seen the redevelopment of the old Pentridge Prison and its extensive grounds. The five year contract value is $690,000.

Intermoco has previously provided a billing only service to the site and has now converted it to a full Intermoco Connect Site.

The second is a five year contract for embedded network services with a specialist in retirement living environments. The contract is for Intermoco to provide and operate the full suite of Intermoco Connect embedded network services to a retirement village on the outskirts of Sydney. The five year contract value is $1.2 million and will deliver related equipment sales and works of over $100,000.

This luxury retirement village will have 200 plus units and is scheduled for completion in the last quarter of 2012. First revenue from this site is expected in first quarter 2012.

The developer has indicated that embedded network services will become an important part of their marketing campaigns for this and other upcoming developments, said Intermoco.

The third is a five year contract for embedded electricity network services with a fast growing development company specializing in quality high rise residential and mixed use buildings.

The contract is for a 14 storey residential and commercial development with 55 units in North Parramatta with a five year contract value of $300,000. The contract will deliver related equipment sales and works to the value of $25,000.

The development is in its final stages and due for completion in the first quarter 2012.

Intermoco chief executive, Ian Kiddle, said the three new Embedded Networks brings to 11 the number of contracted sites. "The different mix of developments represented by these new sites indicates the flexibility of our model and that it can be adapted to any type of tenanted development."

The company is in discussions about further embedded network sites, he said.

Intermoco had September quarter receipts from customers of $986,000. (ASX: INT)

Liquefied Natural Gas
Liquefied Natural Gas has increased its holding in Metgasco from 9 per cent to 10.08 per cent. Prices ranged from 44.2 to 52 cents per share. (ASX: LNG)

Shares in MediVac are currently trading on a deferred settlement basis under the temporary code of "MDVDA", ahead of the share consolidation on a 1 for 20 basis that was approved by shareholders on 27 October 27.

Shares will resume trading under "MDV" on 16 November 2011.

Meanwhile MediVac has issued 29,411,765 shares to La Jolla Cove Investors for partial conversion of the second drawdown on 2 September 2011 under a funding agreement with La Jolla.

The shares were issued for $50,000, an average price of 0.17 cents.

It remains to be seen how MediVac's consolidated shares will travel if La Jolla continues to convert shares and sell large quantities on market.

This happened to Intec Ltd last year when it consolidated its shares but La Jolla continued to convert and sell, driving the share price down until Intec bought out the convertible note.

Liquefied Natural Gas has increased its holding in Metgasco from 9 per cent to 10.08 per cent. Prices ranged from 44.2 to 52 cents per share. (ASX: MEL)

Mission NewEnergy
Mission NewEnergy has completed its 2011 Jatropha tree planting season, adding 40,264 new acres and 14,331 new Jatropha contract farmers. The company now has 234,587 acres under contract representing over 164 million trees.

Mission said that over the lifespan of each acre it anticipates receiving 115 barrels of Jatropha oil. Mission can increase its crude Jatropha oil supply by adding acreage. As the acreage matures, the harvest yields rise.

Increasing Jatropha oil supply is a key driver to its growth, says the company. Mission's existing established acreage is expected to supply 26.9 million barrels of oil with a current market value of over US$3 billion.

Jatropha oil is a high-quality non-food feedstock that Mission turns into biodiesel and which can compete with crude oil above US$52 per barrel.

"We are delighted to be steadily growing our acreage and we see no impediment to future expansion. Our contract farming business model coupled with advanced management technology allows us to effectively plant on otherwise unusable land, giving Mission access to land at no capital cost," said Nathan Mahalingam, Group chief executive of Mission NewEnergy.

"We expect significant year on year Jatropha oil yield growth into the foreseeable future, from the combination of continual acreage expansion and Mission's already maturing acreage profile."

This season Mission has on a trial basis planted high yielding varieties from third parties. It expects these higher yielding Jatropha varieties will significantly reduce the maturation cycle. Mission plans to roll out the best performing varieties in future planting seasons. (ASX: MBT)

Pacific Energy
Pacific Energy's subsidiary Kalgoorlie Power Systems business (KPS) has signed a new electricity supply contract with Millennium Minerals Ltd under which KPS will build, own and maintain the 9 MW Nullagine Gold Project power station.

The contract is for five years commencing on 1 July 2012 with potential for extension. The Nullagine Gold Project is in the Pilbara region of Western Australia about 240 kilometres south east of Port Hedland.

The new contract follows the company's recent contract for the 20 MW DeGrussa Copper Gold Project power station for Sandfire Resources Ltd.

Managing director Adam Boyd said "This is an important contract win for Pacific Energy, marking the company's re-establishment of its power station footprint in the Pilbara. The total contracted capacity of its KPS business is in excess of 185 MW at 18 mine sites around Australia.

"We are on track to achieve our goal of contracted capacity of 250 MW by 2012 with our expansion strategy enhanced by the roll-out of our exclusive waste heat recovery and dual fuel technologies," he said. (ASX: PEA)

Po Valley Energy
Po Valley Energy has commenced workover activities at its Vitalba 1dirA well in the Castello permit, northern Italy. Workover operations are expected to take 20 days to reach the target depth of 1,400 metres.

The company's independent consultant, Dedicated Reservoir Engineering & Management Group, estimates remaining recoverable 2P (proven plus probable) reserves at Vitalba-1dirA to be 3.7 billion cubic feet of gas.

"Subject to successful results, the Vitalba-1dirA well will be connected to the existing Vitalba gas treatment plant, allowing production to re-start without delay," said Po Valley chief executive, Giovanni Catalano.

The Castello permit also includes Po Valley's Bezzecca gas field which contains contingent recoverable 2C (proven plus probable) resources of 3.1 billion cubic feet of gas.

The planned two-well phased development for Bezzecca will require minimal additional investment in new production facilities as a 7 kilometre pipeline will connect the field to Po Valley's existing treatment plant at Vitalba. (ASX: PVE)

Water Resources Group
Water Resources Group says it is in the final stage of evaluating several funding sources to secure bridge funding to cover short term needs, pending contract completion.

Cash at end of the September quarter was $916,000.

The company said made considerable progress in the quarter with its commercial projects, but while it works towards moving these contracts forward it has continued to curb all non-essential expenditure.

The company said it expects to complete formal contracts with the Municipality of Santa Catarina on the Cape Verde Islands during the December quarter. (ASX: WRG)

International Companies

Contact Energy
New Zealand's Contact Energy is considering making an offer of NZ$150 million of unsecured, subordinated Capital Bonds to the New Zealand public to "optimize its capital structure through increasing financial flexibility and extending its term funding profile".

If it proceeds the offer will be managed by Craigs Investment Partners and ANZ. Potential investors who register their interest will receive a Simplified Disclosure Prospectus when it becomes available.

No money is currently being sought and no applications for Capital Bonds will be accepted unless the subscriber has received a Simplified Disclosure Prospectus. (NZX: CEN)

Beacon Power Corporation
US-based Beacon Power Corporation has run into financial difficulty and has filed for Chapter 11, a step it said was necessary and prudent and would allow it to operate its business without interruption. "We will use the Chapter 11 process to more rapidly restructure our overhead, pursue potential investors, and definitively resolve our loan obligations," said Bill Capp, Beacon Power's president and chief executive.

"In the meantime, our 20 MW flywheel plant in Stephentown is functioning at full capacity and it is our intention for it to remain operational," he said.

"Beacon Power has devoted considerable resources and applied extensive effort to build a first-tier team of engineering, technical and other employees, refine our technologies, perfect our patents and other intellectual property, obtain the regulatory and other approvals as required to derive appropriate revenues for our services, and produce the advanced flywheel systems necessary to operate our presently deployed and planned facilities.

‘Those efforts have been very capital-intensive over a several year period. While great progress has been made in every area, each continues to be a work in process and requires additional investment.

‘Accordingly, we determined that the revenues generated from operation of our merchant facility in Stephentown are not sufficient to fully support those business operations, and our company has been operating at a loss.

"In addition, the current uncertain economic and political climate, loan conditions mandated by the Department of Energy, as well as Beacon's recent delisting notice from NASDAQ, have severely restricted access to additional investments through the equity markets."

Beacon is an international micro cap. It has developed a first-of-its-kind flywheel energy storage plant that provides an electric power balancing service to help maintain a reliable grid. The flywheel plant is fully operational and earning revenue with excellent performance. It said. Beacon employees remain on the job and all have accepted a 20 per cent pay reduction to retain jobs.

"Despite the need for this restructuring, we believe that our long-term prospects are favorable. Our goal in taking this action is to minimize job loss, and to continue to find ways to apply our innovative technology in the frequency regulation and energy storage markets. We remain committed to maintaining our business and shareholder relationships and aim to resolve this matter as quickly and efficiently as possible," said Mr Capp.

Unlisted Funds

CVC Sustainable Investments
The CVC Sustainable Investments fund is unlikely to continue with its strategy of investing in early stage companies.

Chairman Vanda Gould said the strategic review of the Fund has come to a point where the board is reviewing the available options. These include:
* A return of capital
* An in-specie distribution of some or all of the assets
* A buy-back facility for those who would like to participate, and or
* A revised business opportunity that may see the introduction of new shareholders.

"The Board is actively evaluating alternatives that fit the current investment situation with the understanding that investors in CVCSI continue to support the company because they are seeking to support environmentally sustainable/ resource efficient opportunities," he said.

"In response to this interest CVCSI has been examining a number of projects that are capable of contributing to a cleaner future and preserve resources for the generations that will follow us."

A decision is likely shortly.

During 2010-11 CVCSI generated a loss of $3,224,793, following the loss in 2009-10 of $842,948. This was a disappointing result, said Mr Gould.

Philip Galloway was appointed as portfolio manager during 2010-11 with the objective of developing options for the Fund. "Mr Galloway has held senior level executive positions with global companies and has since set up highly successful geothermal projects in Australia. Philip has been making considerable progress towards positioning CVCSI for change in the post-GFC economic environment," said Mr Gould.

During the financial year the security price of CVCSI fell from 14.99 cents to 8.76 cents as at 30 June. The fall was predominantly due to a fall in the share price of the Environmental Group Limited (EGL) which has resulted in a 3.09 cent fall in CVCSI's security price; the requirement to impair the carrying value of the deferred tax assets in accordance with accounting standards had an impact of 2.55 cents; and the appreciation of the Australian dollar against the US dollar resulted in a fall in value of HydroChile Pty Ltd, which had an impact of 0.6 cents.

EGL's unprofitable year was primarily due to the impact of the Queensland floods, resulting in delays and deferment of key mining services projects. The outlook for 2012 is positive as EGL has entered the current financial year with a strong order book.

CVCSI has entered into a conditional agreement to sell its shareholding in Pro-Pac Packaging Ltd for 45 cents per share. Subject to completion, CVCSI will receive proceeds of $989,768. "This will be considered a remarkable outcome and underscores the confidence held by CVCSI in the progress of Pro-Pac over the years, especially considering the sale of the asset, if accepted, will be at a premium," said Mr Gould.

During the year HydroChile completed the financing of its two run-of-river hydropower plants, San Andres (40 MW) and El Paso (40 MW), in December 2010. The cost of the two projects is estimated to be around US$250 million, with construction well underway on the San Andreas project, with expected completion in June 2012, and the El Paso project expected to be completed in January 2013. The size of these two projects and the amount of clean energy generated supports the value of CVCSI's involvement in this Australian company, said Mr Gould.

In September Phillip Toyne resigned as a director of CVCSI.

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