AGL Would Look at Accelerating Coal-Plant Closures Post Demerger

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By Stuart Condie
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SYDNEY–AGL Energy Ltd.’s power generation unit would look at accelerating the closure of coal plants following the business’s planned demerger from the Australian firm’s retail operations, AGL’s managing director said.

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AGL Managing Director and Chief Executive Graeme Hunt on Thursday said that the planned Accel Energy business would only accelerate closures if Australia’s energy network could accommodate them in what he called an orderly and responsible way. AGL has already said its Bayswater and Loy Yang A plants will closer earlier than previously planned.

“These revised closure dates are not the end of the story: Accel Energy will continue to challenge these closure dates and look to see how they can improve on this,” Mr. Hunt said at the Macquarie Australia Conference. He did not give further details.

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Australian billionaire Mike Cannon-Brookes has bought an 11% stake in AGL so he can vote against the demerger. Mr. Cannon-Brookes, who was previously involved in a proposal for Australia’s biggest polluter that outlined plans for greenhouse-gas emission cuts, said the generation unit will face multiple risks and be unattractive to investors.

Mr. Hunt on Thursday said AGL’s lenders were strongly supportive of the demerged generation and retail units. Shareholders are scheduled to vote on the demerger in mid-June.

Write to Stuart Condie at [email protected]

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Credit: www.marketwatch.com /

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