Joel Fitzgibbon doesn’t speak for me or the valley I know

Joel Fitzgibbon has been creating political mayhem by selling a false impression of the Hunter region. His high-profile focus on coal would lead you to believe the Hunter is populated by black-faced, hard hat-wearing underground miners straight out of the 19th century.

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The Business Part 3: Beyond the Coal Economy

How the power of music is being used in one mining town in the Hunter Valley to create the workforce of the future.

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Coal communities deserve honesty about the future: Bowen

Coal is under threat, regardless of what domestic climate change policies Australia adopts, and coal miners and their communities are owed honesty by their political leaders, shadow climate minister Chris Bowen says.

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Hydrogen technology can be used to retrofit ageing coal-fired power stations

The Upper Hunter could be home to a manufacturing plant producing hydrogen-based energy modules that can be retrofitted to large industries, including coal-fired power stations.

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ANZ has abandoned the Port of Newcastle under its new climate change policy

ANZ has abandoned the Port of Newcastle, the world's largest coal export port, under its new climate change policy that all but bans loans to the coal sector.

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Thermal coal exports to steady before a slide

Demand for thermal coal is expected to hold steady until the end of the decade before going into a slow decline out to 2050, with the Port of Newcastle expecting demand for its coal exports to peak about 2027.

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Write-down shows AGL has read the writing on the wall

Last Thursday, AGL Energy notably wrote down the value of their production assets and contracts by $2.7 billion. Origin Energy and the Queensland government’s coal generators similarly wrote down the value of their assets.

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The Business Part 2: Beyond the Coal Economy

Stephen Long investigates how Australia's major thermal coal region is transforming itself for a greener economy.

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New plan for 1200-megawatt battery at Kurri Kurri

A PROJECT billed as the largest proposed grid-scale battery in the world will be built at Kurri Kurri, specialist renewable energy fund CEP Energy has announced.

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Close Of Business Part 1: Beyond The Coal Economy

How can coal mining towns reinvent themselves to create new industries and provide jobs for the future?

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Aurizon shares falter on global coal outlook

A gulf has opened up between Aurizon and the broader sharemarket as the rail haulage group’s investors become more pessimistic about future demand for Australian coal because of more countries slashing carbon emissions.

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Coal-rich Hunter Valley ponders jobs future as Asian giants commit to net-zero carbon emissions

At the Lochinvar pub in the NSW Hunter Valley, a couple of power industry workers meet for a drink and ponder the future.

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How big batteries are a boon for regional Australia

Recent announcements that two big batteries will be built at coal-fired power stations in NSW are great news for the energy system and regional communities across Australia.

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Forrest reveals plan to replace coal with 40,000 green steel jobs

Fortescue Metals Group chairman Andrew Forrest says the time is right for Australia to develop its own big steel-making industry using the nation’s vast iron ore resources and emerging green technologies.

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Coal mining: Hunter, Newcastle, Illawarra could face employment crisis from demand decline

Coal mining communities across NSW could be brought to their knees as governments across the globe prepare for a transition from coal-fuelled energy to renewables. A NSW Parliamentary Research report handed down this week has raised concerns over the impact decreased domestic and international demand on the $25.5 billion local coal industry would have on “highly dependent” cities and towns.

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AGL announces suppliers for grid-scale battery plans

AGL has signed agreements with Finland's Wartsila and US storage provider Fluence for the supply up to 1000 megawatts of grid-scale battery storage.

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What's a 'just transition' and can you switch to green energy without sacking coal workers?

Science says the switch to renewables needs to be fast but workers on the ground say it should also be fair. In the first of our explainer series Future Power, we ask, how did Germany do it? And could Australia really have a 'just transition' too?

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Australian coal shipments to China at standstill amid unresolved trade tensions

No ships left the big ports in Queensland and NSW in December ahead of Beijing resetting coal import quotas for the new year

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Parliamentary inquiry into why banks are abandoning coal will reveal nothing

ANZ was the last of Australia's big four banks to announce it will stop financing thermal coal projects in Australia. The Australian coal industry will now need to head overseas if it wants to borrow funds for new projects, and many government MPs aren't happy.

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Coalition should commit to halving emissions this decade, says conservative thinktank

A report by Blueprint Institute says coal-fired power generation is in ’permanent decline’ and its end is ‘inevitable’

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Coal export earnings tipped to sink by $5b in FY21

The federal government has revised its thermal coal export estimates for this financial year down by 9 million tonnes off the back of restrictions on coal trade with China and is tipping export earnings to sink by $5 billion

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Fossil fuels could be wound back without massive layoffs: report

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If China stops taking Australia's coal, will other countries fill the gap?

Chinese state-owned media appeared to confirm a ban on imports of Australian coal this week.  Australian officials are now trying to figure out how serious the threat is, and its implications.  If China stops taking Australia's coal, will other countries fill the gap? Could Japan, India and South Korea?

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Glencore commits to Hunter region despite closing mines

Glencore has confirmed two of its Hunter Valley mines will close in 2023. The announcement comes during a challenging time for the industry, which is taking a hit from China’s import freeze.

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New Foundation launches to help locals with the creation of jobs and economic growth amid mine and power station closures

A new foundation has launched to assist with the creation of jobs and economic growth in response to scheduled power station and thermal mine closures over the coming decades.

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China's unofficial ban on Australian coal sees exports halt as trade war rages

Thermal coal exports to China from Australia's busiest coal terminal have completely stopped amid escalating trade tensions and an unofficial Chinese ban on Australian coal.

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Glencore takes axe to coal targets but says Australia will be spared

Glencore, one of the world's biggest coal miners, has forecast its global output will fall by more than 25 per cent but its Australian mines will be among the last to close.

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Replacing Liddell with renewables cheaper, cleaner and reliable

Fresh research from energy consultancy Reputex shows investment aligned with the NSW renewables road map will provide a cheaper and lower emissions option to replace AGL's ageing Liddell coal fired power plant compared to the business as usual case and the federal government's preferred gas-peaker option.

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As more countries pledge zero emissions, coal finance evaporates

TOKYO (Reuters) - Financing for coal projects is drying up at ever increasing rates as more countries target zero carbon emissions amid an energy transition sweeping the world, participants at Asia's biggest gathering of the coal industry said on Tuesday.

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India's love affair with coal cools as pressure grows on sector

Funding for coal projects in India has plunged for the second straight year, new figures showed Tuesday, as the world's second biggest coal importer weans itself off the dirty fuel.

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I'm a coal miner and I can't see how Fitzgibbon represents me

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State government's 'pumped hydro' plan endorsed by virtually all MPs but concerns about land and environmental impacts emerge during debate

THE Hunter-Central Coast and the Illawarra are set to become formal Renewable Energy Zones after an amended Electricity Infrastructure Investment Bill was passed in the NSW Parliament lower house, Labor MPs said last night.

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AGL to press pause as NSW powers on

AGL Energy has paused its Newcastle gas plant decision and is reviewing a giant battery investment at Liddell, amid uncertainty around the NSW government’s controversial energy blueprint, in a move that may also nix Scott Morrison’s hopes for 1000 megawatts of new power capacity to be committed in the state by April.

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Coal, energy policy and climate change bring Canberra heavyweights to the Hunter Region

THE Hunter is the centre of national and international political attention over coal, renewables and climate change after Joel Fitzgibbon's explosive exit a week ago from the federal Labor opposition front bench.

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NSW to transform Hunter coal region into state’s next renewable energy zone

The New South Wales government has quietly made a new commitment to transform the now coal-dependent Hunter Region as a hub of new renewable energy and storage projects as part of its broad and ground-breaking plans to transition the state’s grid from coal to renewables.

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Hunter ready to be a power player in state's renewable power vision

If you didn't know it already, there's no better place to be than the Hunter after Energy Minister Matt Kean announced plans to turn NSW into a renewable energy superpower.

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Glencore to lay off contractors at Australia's Hunter Valley on market downturn

Glencore, the world's biggest thermal coal trader, said on Monday it plans to lay off contractors at its coal operations in Australia's New South Wales state due to a prolonged market downturn.

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Amendments will ensure the Hunter is classified as a Renewable Energy Zone

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Newcastle thermal coal spot prices steady but well down on last year, latest Australian Bureau of Statistics figures show

AMERICAN coal company Peabody Energy is again in financial trouble, putting a question mark over its important Australian operations, including the Hunter's Wambo mine and its complex at Wilpinjong, near Mudgee, which exports out of Newcastle.

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Pumped hydro and new market mechanisms at heart of state government plan to encourage $32 billion in private spending on renewables

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New environmental lobby 'Hunter Jobs Alliance' seeks seat at the table before impacts of climate policy shift coal

ALTHOUGH the timing was unintentional, the launch of a new Hunter organisation wanting a seat at the post-coal decision-making table comes at the same time as another indicator of the industry's declining fortunes; new tonnage figures showing a 5 per cent fall in shipments for the year so far through Newcastle's main coal export terminal.

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AMWU, ETU and other unions push 'just transition' policies by forming new post-coal jobs alliance

EIGHT unions and five environmental groups have formed a new "jobs alliance" to counter the "failed 'jobs versus the environment' dynamic" they say is holding back the Hunter Region when it comes to energy policy and the "inevitable" transition to renewables.

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Peabody told to repay Australian mine rehab bonds

Funds set aside for reclamation of coal mines in New South Wales and Queensland are caught up in a $US202 million ($288 million) claim lobbed against struggling miner Peabody Energy.

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Net-zero goals cloud $76b of exports

Australia's fossil fuel exporters have been put on notice of waning appetite for their product from some of their biggest customers in Asia as South Korea's adoption of a net-zero emissions target increased the share of markets committed to decarbonisation to over 70 per cent.

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Centre-right thinktank warns Morrison government of 'grave future for coal exports'

Pandemic should be ‘catalyst for change’, warns Blueprint Institute, which has close ties with former Liberals including Christopher Pyne

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Japan's net zero by 2050 pledge another warning to Australia on fossil fuels, analysts say

The Morrison government is urged to prepare for a shift in the global economy as major trading partners move to cut emissions. A pledge by Japan to cut its greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050 underscores the risk facing Australia if it fails to prepare for the inevitable shift in the global economy and falling demand for fossil fuels, analysts say.

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Coal regions advised to look to renewables for jobs growth as IEA report highlights falling demand

Demand for Australian thermal coal has peaked, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA), and renewables will deliver 80 per cent of the world's energy needs in the next few years.

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Coal miners dive as China cuts imports

Australian coal miners could be forced to sell “distressed” cargoes at a discount as China looks to restrict imports of both thermal and coking coal, according to consulting major Wood Mackenzie, as shares in Australian miners tumbled on the prospect of fresh import bans.

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Energy Renaissance to build new $28 million battery manufacturing facility at Tomago

Energy Renaissance, Australia's first lithium-ion battery manufacturer, has chosen the NSW Hunter as the location for its new $28 million battery manufacturing facility.

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Australia's coal miners face $17b export collapse

Australia's coal miners are headed for a $17 billion collapse in export earnings this year as the shock of the coronavirus crisis persists and more Asian power utilities switch from coal to gas.

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