Mining magnate explores hydropower and geothermal in PNG

Mining magnate explores hydropower and geothermal in PNG Signing of the agreement with Andrew Forrest, FMG and representatives of PNG at COP 26 (source: Fortescue Future Industries)
Alexander Richter 9 Nov 2021

As part of an international drive for green hydrogen development, Fortescue Future Industries has signed a comprehensive agreement on feasibilities studies for hydropower and geothermal projects in Papua New Guinea.

In a release shared this week, Australian Fortescue Future Industries (FFI) is partnering with Papua New Guinea (PNG), one of the most renewable energy-rich countries in the world, to develop multiple large-scale green energy and green hydrogen projects.

Fortescue Future Industries is a global green energy and product company working on producing zero-emission green hydrogen from 100% renewable sources and is part of the Fortescue Metals Group

FFI’s Papua New Guinea Fortescue Future Industries Ltd, and the State of Papua New Guinea today signed a Master Development Agreement (MDA) that will enable FFI to undertake feasibility studies to develop up to seven hydropower projects and 11 geothermal energy projects in PNG.

These projects would generate renewable electricity for the purpose of producing green hydrogen and green ammonia, creating a significant new domestic energy and export industry for PNG, which currently heavily relies on imported oil.

FFI Chief Executive Officer, Julie Shuttleworth AM said, “Our green energy vision for PNG will lead to more jobs, a stronger economy, thriving communities and importantly, lower emissions for Papua New Guinea.

“We share Prime Minister Marape’s vision that PNG can be at the forefront of developing hydropower and geothermal resources for the emerging global green hydrogen industry.

“We are looking forward to continuing our work alongside the Government of Papua New Guinea to develop these important opportunities,” Ms Shuttleworth said.

FFI’s identified projects in PNG could produce up to 2.3 million tonnes of green hydrogen per year once completed.

Fortescue Chairman, Dr Andrew Forrest AO said, “These projects will completely transform PNG to become a leader in the world’s renewable energy transition.

“We are committed to ensuring PNG’s communities benefit from growth and development through these projects, including training, employment and business development opportunities,” Dr Forrest said.

FFI’s proposed Purari Wabo Hydropower project and West New Britain Geothermal project have made significant progress with scoping studies and early-stage pre-feasibility works completed.

FFI is a values-based business committed to enriching communities through economic growth, gender equality of employment and education, and ending exploitation and modern slavery.

“We are proud that our investment contracts place human rights, environment and then economics, in that order, in every discussion we have with every government in the world,” Ms Shuttleworth said.

“FFI will also undertake extensive community, landowner and stakeholder engagement to develop a detailed national content plan as part of its stakeholder investment strategy.”

FFI’s projects will be conducted in full compliance with PNG laws and adhere to strict international best practice standards relating to the conservation and protection of the environment, biodiversity and cultural heritage, occupational health and safety, anti-bribery and corruption, anti-money laundering and eradicating modern slavery.

Source: Company release