Ambre Energy’s plans for Northwest coal export terminals rest on shaky finances, environmental think tank charges

The Oregonian, February 13, 2013
By Scott Learn

A Seattle environmental think tank that opposes coal exports to Asia through the Northwest blasted the finances of one of the key players today, Australia’s Ambre Energy.

Ambre Energy's Decker Mine in southeastern Montana has faced recent layoffs amid slumping U.S. demand for coal. Asian exports could help revive the mine. Scott Learn, The Oregonian

Ambre Energy’s Decker Mine in southeastern Montana has faced recent layoffs amid slumping U.S. demand for coal. Asian exports could help revive the mine. Scott Learn, The Oregonian

Ambre is seeking to build two coal export terminals on the Columbia River, one in Boardman and one in Longview, Wash., to ship Montana and Wyoming coal to Asia.

Among the financial downsides highlighted by the Sightline Institute: Ambre’s $124 million in accumulated losses since it began in 2005; its failure on its only coal mining play in Australia; and roughly $65 million in loans with rates ranging from 10 percent to 12 percent.

Sightline researcher Clark Williams-Derry, who wrote a 17-page report on Ambre’s finances, called the company a “high-risk, unstable startup” in a conference call with reporters this morning.

He warned that ports banking on Ambre for jobs and investment could be disappointed.

Communities could “be stuck with a local business partner that’s really volatile,” Williams-Derry said.

Read more…

About coalfreegorge

Coal is rearing its head again the Columbia Gorge. The new threat comes in the form of proposals to export coal from Wyoming to coal-fired power plants in China. The coal would be transported via uncovered rail cars through the Columbia Gorge. Many Columbia Gorge Communities in Oregon and Washington support a coal-free world, beginning at home, in the heart of the Columbia River Gorge, recognizing the importance of people determining what materials are allowable for transport through their communities and watersheds. This blog exists to communicate and advocate for the public interest in issues pertaining to coal transport in the Columbia River Gorge, providing an online outlet for honest discussion and information. To inform and unite local citizens about the damaging effects of coal transport through our communities. To endorse positive and considerate dialogue with the aim of mutual understanding among diverse parties. CLEAN AIR HEALTHY COMMUNITIES NO COAL EXPORTS STOP COAL IN ITS TRACKS
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