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Energy Transfer in revised LOI for Louisiana carbon hub

The revised LOI for CapturePoint's Central Louisiana Regional Carbon Storage Hub (CENLA Hub) provides for Energy Transfer the right to participate in a joint venture that will own and operate the hub.

CapturePoint LLC and affiliate CapturePoint Solutions LLC have signed a revised Letter of Intent with an affiliate of Energy Transfer LP that provides for the joint development of a carbon capture and permanent deep underground storage project in Louisiana.

The companies also signed a definitive CO2 Offtake Agreement committing CO2 from Energy Transfer’s Haynesville natural gas treating facilities, according to a news release.

The revised LOI and accompanying CO2 Offtake Agreement dedicate CO2 that would otherwise be emitted from Energy Transfer’s Haynesville natural gas midstream facilities to CapturePoint’s Central Louisiana Regional Carbon Storage Hub (CENLA Hub) and provide Energy Transfer the right to participate in a joint venture that will own and operate the CENLA Hub. The LOI also provides a framework for CapturePoint and Energy Transfer to collaborate regarding the capture and sequestration of additional CO2 from other Energy Transfer facilities in Louisiana.

In an interview earlier this year, CapturePoint CEO Tracy Evans said the expected cost of the CENLA Hub is $600m.

The CENLA Hub is one of the largest onshore deep underground carbon storage centers under development in the United States with the capacity to permanently secure millions of tons of CO2 annually that would otherwise be released into the atmosphere. These agreements provide the foundation for the capture and storage of up to two million tons of CO2 annually at the CENLA Hub.

“Energy Transfer is one of the largest and most diversified midstream energy companies in North America,” noted Tracy Evans, CEO of CapturePoint. “The revised LOI and the CO2 Offtake Agreement reflect Energy Transfer’s recognition of the CENLA Hub as one of the most promising deep underground CO2 storage sites in the nation. We are excited to have this significant commitment from Energy Transfer.”

Recent test well data from the CENLA Hub demonstrates that the unique geology of the region could permanently sequester a total of several hundred million tons of CO2. The Louisiana Department of Natural Resources is currently reviewing CapturePoint’s permit applications for CENLA Hub Class VI CO2 injection sites in Vernon and Rapides Parishes.

“We want to thank our partners in the local CENLA Hub communities for their strong support for this important economic and environmental development,” concluded Mr. Evans. “Our team at CapturePoint is working to deliver a leading-edge project that will define the future of carbon management in the United States.”

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German IPP secures €500m financing facility from EIG

The facility is expected to support ILOS’s plans to generate more than 2 GW of power through solar and battery projects by 2026, but also contemplates the deployment of capital to co-located battery storage and hydrogen.

ILOS Projects, a Pan-European Independent Power Producer (IPP) sponsored by Omnes, today announced the signing of a €500m structured credit facility with EIG, an institutional investor in the global energy and infrastructure sectors.

The facility is expected to support ILOS’s plans to generate more than 2 GW of power through solar and battery projects by 2026. The facility comprises an initial tranche of €250m and includes an accordion that would increase the loan amount by an additional €250m. Additional financing terms were not disclosed.

The facility is intended to accelerate ILOS’s growth toward becoming a leading Pan-European IPP, with loan proceeds available to provide construction equity and acquisition capital for ready-to-build assets. Initially, ILOS intends to focus on projects in Ireland, the UK, the Netherlands, Greece and Italy, but the facility also contemplates the deployment of capital in other OECD jurisdictions as well as in co-located battery storage and hydrogen.

Akereos Capital acted as sole bookrunner, structurer and exclusive debt advisor to ILOS. Allen & Overy served as legal advisor to ILOS and Milbank served as EIG’s legal advisor.

Rob Johnson, managing director and global head of direct lending at EIG, said, “We’re thrilled to support ILOS in these exciting growth initiatives as they work to expand their footprint across Europe. This transaction is a testament to our confidence in the management team, their strategy and ILOS’s sponsors, and it underscores EIG’s commitment to investing in high-quality assets and energy infrastructure that support a low-carbon future.”

Michael Pollan, partner at Omnes, said, “ILOS has seen tremendous growth over the last two years. We are proud to continue supporting the company as it works toward this ambitious IPP project. We also look forward to partnering with EIG, a leader in the energy infrastructure sector that shares our common values and strategic view.”

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8 Rivers opening tech portfolio to Chart Industries

Chart Industries has executed a memorandum of understanding with 8 Rivers Capital evaluate the latter’s portfolio of technologies, according to a news release.

The collaboration includes developing equipment for 8 Rivers’ technologies backed up by Chart’s design and manufacturing capabilities.

”The companies will work together to identify and develop commercial opportunities to integrate Chart offerings into 8 Rivers projects,” the release states.

In March The Hydrogen Source reported that North Carolina-based 8 Rivers was scouting for a location in the US Gulf Coast for its first clean hydrogen production facility and would need to raise capital.

The firm has developed new technologies such as 8RH2, a process to generate hydrogen with full carbon capture, and the Allam-Fetvedt Cycle, a process which helps to generate power from carbon-based fuels without air emissions.

Chart would become one of the suppliers of choice for various liquefaction, refrigeration processes, or liquefaction and refrigeration equipment technologies, cold boxes, heat exchangers, compressors, fans, liquid hydrogen storage tanks and trailers, and other associated equipment needed to implement 8 Rivers’ technologies.

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Braya Renewables hires industry veteran Todd O’Malley as CEO

O’Malley, who comes from the downstream energy industry, is joining the company as CEO. Frank Almaraz, Braya’s current CEO, will stay on with Braya, focusing on its work to develop wind and green hydrogen opportunities with ABO Wind.

Braya Renewable Fuels (Braya) announced today that Todd O’Malley is joining the company as its Chief Executive Officer (CEO). Frank Almaraz, Braya’s current CEO, will stay on with Braya, focusing on Braya’s work to develop wind and green hydrogen opportunities with ABO Wind.

O’Malley has previously held C-suite positions at Delek US Holdings (COO), Citizens Companies (President and CEO), Gulf Oil (EVP and Chief Commercial Officer), PBF Logistics (President), and PBF Energy (SVP and Chief Commercial Officer).

“Under the direction of Jim Stump, Braya’s President of Refining, the project has hit several key milestones and is positioned to be the largest independently owned renewable diesel refinery in North America. I’m eager to do my part in helping the refinery in Come By Chance contribute to the ongoing effort to decarbonize heavy transport and aviation, both of which are crucial to the world’s economic activity and have limited near-term energy transition solutions.”

Chris Rozzell, Braya’s Chairman of the Board and Managing Partner of Cresta Fund Management LLC, a private equity fund based in Dallas, Texas that owns a controlling interest in Braya, added, “Todd is a great addition to Braya’s leadership team. He has an unmatched reputation in the refining industry, and we think Todd is a perfect fit for Braya as it grows into its renewable fuel production ambitions. Adding Todd to the team will also give Frank more time to focus on Braya’s green hydrogen project, which is a key growth area for its business.”

Energy Capital Partners recently made a $300m preferred equity investment in the project.

On September 6, 2023, Braya announced the successful outcome of the Crown Land Call for Bids for Wind Energy Projects, which awarded to Braya partner ABO Wind exclusive rights to pursue development of the Toqlukuti’k Wind and Hydrogen Ltd. Project. Almaraz will continue to lead the project development for Braya.

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US hydrogen and LNG developer raising capital

A Texas-based project developer is conducting a development capital raise for a flagship LNG and green hydrogen project in the Northeast.

New Energy Development Company, a Katy, Texas-based developer with offices in Boston, Texas, is raising between $5m and $8m for an LNG liquefaction, storage and re-gasification facility with additional green hydrogen production and storage, Partner Scott Shields said in an interview.

The company is not using a financial advisor, Shields said, noting that a larger second round capital raise will likely start near the beginning of 2024.

New Energy has secured a brownfield site for a peak-shaving LNG facility in New England with 2 billion cubic feet of storage capacity and 50 MW of solar pv, Shields said. Also planned is an expandable 40 MW PEM electrolyzer line.

He declined to name the state in which the project is located, adding that the company is trying to put a strong support system and marketing plan in place before the location is made public.

The proceeds of the capital raise will go in part to hiring local lawyers and engineering and design work (pre-FEED and FEED), through to FID, Shields said. The project will be built in two phases, Phase 1 being the LNG component and Phase 2 focusing on green hydrogen.

The LNG facility will be the offtaker for the hydrogen, which will run the plant when the solar is insufficient. Through an open season process New Energy has identified five investment grade offtakers for the LNG.

Ramping capex

“We’ve been self-funding up until now,” Shields said of New Energy, which has also put capital and development resources into half-a-dozen other projects around the country.

It’s time for a ramp up in capital expenditures and New Energy is in discussions with strategic and private equity providers, Shields said, noting that the company would prefer the former. Discussions include options to fund just the flagship project, as well as platform equity.

Shields noted that he has investment banking experience and that New Energy Managing Partner Alexander “Hap” Ellis serves as chairman of Old Westbury Funds and the George and Barbara Bush Foundation.

New Energy has partnered with McDermott International to develop patented GreenER hydrogen facilities, a modular, expandable hydrogen facility that can produce 24,000 kg per day (2,760 MMBtu) of renewable hydrogen. The companies in 2021 completed engineering deliverables for multiple designs which are marketed as ideal for grid-scale blending with natural gas pipelines, blending for existing or new power generating facilities and storage injection into salt caverns and above ground storage tanks.

The company has also combined GreenER LNG and hydrogen production and storage plants into an integrated energy hub, capable of producing an additional 200,000 MMBtu of LNG.

New Energy recently hired Chico DaFonte, formerly a vice president at Liberty Utilities, a subsidiary of Algonquin Power, as executive vice president working on LNG and hydrogen projects.

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Exclusive: Banker enlisted for CO2-to-SAF capital raise

BofA Securities is running a capital raise for a US-based CO2-to-SAF technology provider and project developer with a global pipeline of projects.

eFuels developer Infinium has launched a Series C capital raise along with efforts to advance unannounced projects in its development pipeline, Ayesha Choudhury, head of capital markets, said in an interview.

Bank of America has been engaged to advise on the capital raise.

Infinium recently announced the existence of Project Roadrunner, located in West Texas, which will convert an existing brownfield gas-to-liquids project into an eFuels facility delivering products to both US and international markets. Breakthrough Energy Catalyst has contributed $75m in project equity.

Infinium, which launched in 2020, closed a $69m Series B in 2021, with Amazon, NextEra and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries participating. Its Project Pathfinder in Corpus Christi is fully capitalized.

About a dozen projects, split roughly 50/50 between North America and the rest of the world, are in development now, Choudhury said. The company is always scouting new projects and is looking for partners to provide CO2, develop power generation and offtake end products.

A CO2 feedstock agreement for a US Midwest project with BlackRock-backed Navigator CO2 Ventures was recently scrapped after the latter developer cancelled its CO2 pipeline project.

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Low-carbon crude refinery developer lining up project cap stack

The developer of a low-carbon crude refinery is in talks with banks and strategics to line up project financing for a $5.5bn project in Oklahoma.

Texas-based Southern Rock Energy Partners is holding discussions with banks and potential strategic investors with the aim of shaping a $5.5bn capital stack to build a low-carbon crude refinery in Cushing, Oklahoma.

The project, a first-of-its-kind 250,000 barrel-per-day crude refinery, would make it the first crude facility of that size built in the United States in several decades.

The company is evaluating a project finance route with a debt and equity structure for the project, and has held talks with several major investment banks as well as “industry-leading” strategics in midstream, industrial gas, and electricity generation, Southern Rock Managing Partner Steven Ward said in an interview.

In support of the refinery, the city of Cushing and the Cushing Economic Development Foundation approved $75m in tax-exempt private activity bonds, Ward noted. He added that the company could also tap industrial revenue bonds as well as PACE equity financing.

Seed capital for project development has so far come from strategic partners, some of which are operational partners, Ward said. He declined to comment further on the capital raise, noting that engagement letters have yet to be signed.

Engineering firm KBR is conducting a feasibility study for the Cushing project, and the company is moving through land acquisition, air permit preparation, and EPC selection, Ward said.

While most crude refineries consume natural gas, off-gasses, and ambient air, Southern Rock’s proposed refinery would use oxygen along with blue hydrogen produced from the refining off-gasses and green hydrogen from electrolysis. The process would eliminate 95% of greenhouse gas emissions at the proposed refinery.

“Our furnaces and our process heating units are fed 100% hydrogen and oxygen,” Ward said, noting that this type of system does not currently exist in the market. The company is expanding on technology it licenses from Great Southern Flameless, he said.

The size of the refinery would make it the largest to be built in the US since Marathon Petroleum built a 200,000 barrels-per-day facility in 1976.

Certain other low-carbon crude projects have been in the market for several years. Meridian Energy has been seeking to build cleaner crude refineries in North Dakota. Raven Petroleum ran up against environmental concerns while seeking to build a clean refinery in Texas. And MMEX is aiming to build an “ultra clean” crude refinery in West Texas.

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