Lower carbon emissions foot the bill as BHP Billiton and Peking University sign $7.3million deal
In a three-year partnership, BHP and Peking University will be investing US$7.3million to develop low carbon emission technology across multiple sectors, particularly the iron and steel industries.
BHP Billiton Chief Executive Officer, Andrew Mackenzie, said the program is part of the Company’s support for the development of low emissions technology across multiple sectors.
“The application of carbon capture, use and storage may prove to be important to reducing the volume of greenhouse gas emitted by the steel sector in China and elsewhere. However, investment in the technology is behind where it needs to be,” he said.
“As a major metallurgical coal and iron ore supplier, BHP Billiton has a role in working with our customers, industry and research institutions in China. The work to be undertaken through this agreement is a necessary first step to get the fundamentals right and accelerate CCUS development and deployment.”
President of Peking University, Professor Lin Jianhua, spoke highly of the partnership as PKU’s latest example in seeking solutions to challenges faced by the country and the world.
“We recognise the importance of international collaboration in addressing the global challenge of climate change. This new project will push forward the collaborative work on many fronts, help support China’s carbon reduction, as well as promote friendship and cooperation between China and Australia,” he said.
Lynas revenue jumps 21% as rare earth prices jump
Australian miner Lynas Rare Earths posted a 20.6% rise in revenue in the March quarter as selling prices for the key metals it mines hit record highs amid strong demand, particularly for neodymium and praseodymium (NdPr).
NdPr is used in magnets for electric vehicles and windfarms, in consumer goods like smartphones, and in military equipment such as jet engines and missile guidance systems.
The company said it plans to maintain production at 75% however, as it seeks to continue to meet covid-19 safety protocols and grapples with shipping difficulties. Shares in Lynas fell 6.1% after the results.
“They have faced a few logistics issues, and it would be good to know when they are going to start lifting their utilisation rates a bit,” said portfolio manager Andy Forster of Argo Investments in Sydney.
“Pricing has been pretty strong although it may have peeled back a bit recently. I still think the medium, long-term outlook is pretty good for their suite of products.”
Lynas post ed revenue of A$110mn ($85.37mn) for the three months to the end of March, up from A$91.2mn a year earlier as prices soared.
It said its full product range garnered average selling prices of A$35.5/kg during the March quarter, up from $23.7 in the first half of the financial year. “While the persistence of the covid crisis, especially in Europe, calls for careful forecasts for our business ahead, we see the rare earth market recovering very quickly,” said Lynas, the world’s largest rare earths producer outside China.
Freight demand has spiked during the pandemic, while the blockage of the Suez Canal in March delayed a shipment to April.
Lynas’ output of 4,463 tonnes of rare earth oxide (REO) during the quarter was marginally lower than 4,465 tonnes from a year earlier.