News Wrap

IN THIS morning’s News Wrap: Wesfarmers committed to coal; costly wind, solar batteries good for Australian coal, says IEA; and Initial fines of $93M levied v BHP-Vale for Brazil mining disaster.

Lou Caruana

Wesfarmers committed to coal

Wesfarmers managing director Richard Goyder said the Perth-based conglomerate's resources business would be “difficult for the foreseeable future” but it remained committed to its coal assets, according to the Australian Financial Review.

Speaking after the company's annual meeting in Perth, Goyder stressed Australian coal should be viewed as helping combat climate change in a world where emerging Asian economies continued to grow.

Costly wind, solar batteries good for Australian coal, says IEA

The International Energy Agency says storage batteries used to back up wind and solar power are too costly to undermine Asia's booming demand for coal, according to the Australian Financial Review.

The agency defended its resilient global coal demand projections against criticism that they exaggerate demand growth, especially from India and south-east Asia, for Australian coal.

Initial fines of $93M levied v BHP-Vale for Brazil mining disaster

President Dilma Rousseff on Thursday announced preliminary fines worth 250 million reais ($93.2 million) against a mine in southeastern Brazil where two dams burst, killing at least seven people and coating a two-state area with mud and mine waste, according to the Australian Financial Review.

The fines, announced after Rousseff flew over the affected area, come as federal prosecutors announced plans to work with state prosecutors to investigate possible crimes that could have contributed to the disaster at the mine, jointly owned by multinational mining companies BHP Billiton and Vale.

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