Engie to shut Australian brown coal-fired plant

A brown coal-fired power plant in Australia is to be shut after a review by owner Engie.

The 1.5 GW Hazelwood plant in Victoria state came online in 1971 and supplies 5.4 per cent of Australia’s baseload power.

Engie CEO Isabelle Kocher said in May that her firm could consider selling the plant as part of its strategy to transform its business model from a focus on coal- and gas-fired power to renewables, energy services and decentralized energy technologies.

However, Kocher said earlier this month that "We are reviewing all the coal-fired power plants in our portfolio one by one. There are some sites for which we will find buyers, but it does not look like Hazelwood is heading that way”.

In 2005, Hazelwood was listed as the OECD’s least carbon-efficient power plant in a report from WWF Australia.

The plant is jointly owned by Engie, which holds a 72 per cent stake, and Japan’s Mitsui & Co Ltd, which holds 28 per cent.

Up to 1000 jobs will reportedly be lost when the plant shuts.


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