Clean Invest Africa Plc, the NEX Exchange quoted clean technology and renewable energy investment company, is delighted to announce its first investment. The company has signed an investment agreement with privately held CoalTech LLC (“CoalTech”), a Delaware limited liability company, and its sister company, Coal Agglomeration South Africa (Pty) Ltd (“CASA”), which will give CIA shareholders exposure to a commercial and scalable technology applied to the remediation of waste coal fines. The technology produces a high quality, saleable energy source from what would otherwise be a problematic waste product.
Under the terms of the investment agreement CIA will invest US$500,000 in return for a 2.5% holding in the ordinary share capital of CASA and will also be awarded an equivalent shareholding in CoalTech.
CoalTech’s principal focus lies in cleaning up the toxic and environmentally damaging waste generated by coal mining. The process delivers a high quality saleable energy source, the properties of which allow it to be easily handled and transported to customers around the world. Coal fines or tailings are a wasteful by-product of the coal mining process that have a low market value, are generally expensive to dispose of, and are left in stockpiles or slurry ponds at or near mining sites. At present, vast amounts of coal discards lie in open-air lagoons as wasted by-products. It is estimated that over 30 billion metric tonnes of coal tailings are available in the top 10 coal producing countries (Source: International Energy Association).
In 2012, CoalTech started a programme intended to develop a financially viable technology solution that would enable the agglomeration of a large quantity of waste coal fines, which are currently being produced and stored as waste, into commercially viable products to be sold to domestic and export markets. A test pelletizer plant was developed in South Africa, which was later converted into a pilot plant in March 2014. Following successful independent testing, undertaken by Bureau Veritas, the shareholders took the decision to further invest in research and development, and fabricate a modular industrial-size pelletizer plant. This plant has been tested and is now operating commercially in South Africa.
Through extensive research and development, CoalTech has devised a method of converting coal fines into cost efficient, durable pellets by which the coal fines are bound together in the pelletizer plant using a proprietary chemically-formulated organic binder. Overcoming problems experienced by traditional processes, their heat-resistant binder can be used on a large commercial and industrial scale, with significant cost benefits resulting from the avoidance of storage and handling costs, and by producing usable coal pellets from waste materials with equal calorific value as the coal it came from.
CoalTech has also engaged Sedgmans, a leading engineering company in minerals processing and service provider to the resources sector, to develop phase two of the pelletising plants which are now at the pre-production phase with completion expected in quarter four, 2018.
CoalTech’s ambition is to become established as the world’s pre-eminent clean technology solution of waste coal fines which can provide coal mines and coal utilisation sites, such as power stations, with on-site remediation of a long-term and challenging environmental issue within the industry.
Sam Preece, Executive Director of CIA commented: “We are very pleased to announce our first investment into CoalTech and CASA. CoalTech’s investment case and proprietary technology offers a novel solution to environmentally damaging waste coal fines that has wide potential across coal producing countries within Africa and beyond. The demonstrated ability to create a saleable and transportable energy product from waste is exciting. Engaging this technology in a commercially sustainable model will maximise the positive environmental impact and address a wide-spread waste and legacy contamination issue. We look forward to providing shareholders with regular news updates as CoalTech and CASA progress in this exciting area of clean technology.”
The directors of the Company accept responsibility for the contents of this announcement.