Arckaringa Coal-to-Liquids and Power Project

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Arckaringa Coal-to-Liquids and Power Project is a cancelled power station in near Oodnadatta, South Australia, Australia.


Table 1: Project-level location details

Plant name Location Coordinates (WGS 84)
Arckaringa Coal-to-Liquids and Power Project near Oodnadatta, South Australia, Australia -27.938926, 134.726094 (approximate)

The map below shows the approximate location of the power station.

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Project Details

Table 2: Unit-level details

Unit name Status Fuel(s) Capacity (MW) Technology Start year Retired year
Phase I cancelled coal - unknown 560 unknown
Phase II cancelled coal - unknown 280 unknown

Table 3: Unit-level ownership and operator details

Unit name Owner
Phase I Altona Energy [100.0%]
Phase II Altona Energy [100.0%]

Project summary

The project was proposed by Altona Energy. The first phase was described as "an integrated 10 million barrel per year Coal to Liquid (‘CTL') plant with a 560 MW [megawatt] co-generation power facility."[1] The Bureau of Resources and Energy Economics (BREE) stated the first phase was estimated to cost US$3.5 billion, including the cost of a 10 million tonne per annum mine.[2]

BREE also listed a second phase of the project as an additional 280 MW baseload power station.[2]


An Altona Resources subsidiary, Arckaringa Energy Pty Ltd, has a 49% interest in three exploration licenses covering 2,500 sq. kms in the northern portion of the Permian Arckaringa Basin in South Australia. The company stated that "these include three coal deposits, Westfield (EL3360), Wintinna (EL3361) and Murloocoppie (EL3362). All three lay close to the Adelaide to Darwin railway and the Stuart Highway. Containing more than 7.5 billion tonnes of coal (based on previous JORC standards) these coal deposits are effectively one of the world's largest undeveloped energy banks, capable of conversion into clean liquid fuels, low cost power and high value industrial feedstocks.[1] (Note that the company only has exploration licences, not mining licences).

In May 2008 Altona stated that it was "proceeding to the final stage of the Bankable Feasibility Study" for the project.[1]

The company has stated that it expects the final feasibility and government licensing to take approximately two years and that the project would consist of "two modules comprising the 'base case' 10 million barrel per year CTL Plant and associated power facility could come on stream over a period of between 36 and 54 months."[3]

In its 2009 annual report Altona Resources states that it "is about to embark on the Final Feasibility Study for the Arckaringa Project, with a base case comprising:

  • A 10 Million tonne per annum open cut coal mine at Wintinna
  • 10 Million barrels per annum of ultra clean fuels, mainly diesel
  • 560 MW of export power." [4]

In November 2009 Alton Resources announced that it has signed a binding agreement with CNOOC New Energy Investment (CNOOC-NEI) [5]

Altona Energy has begun phase 1 of its Bankable Feasibility Study into the coal to liquids project and associated coal power station. It expects that environmental approvals will be sought in 2012, financing plans developed in 2013 and construction to begin in 2014.[6]

In January 2014 Altona Energy announced that it was ending its joint venture with CNOOC, with the Chinese company's 51% stake transferred to Altona. "Working with CNOOC was becoming an increasingly frustrating experience all round, particularly for our shareholders, and we are excited to be talking to potential partners who are showing real dynamism and enthusiasm to work with us," Chief Executive Chris Lambert said in a media release. Altona stated that it had hired Parsons Brinckerhoff to "ensure the bankable feasibility study is completed" and that the project "is as economically, environmentally and socially viable as it always has been."[7]

In November 2014, Altona, Sino-Aus Energy Group and Wintask Group incorporated the Arckaringa Coal Chemical Joint Venture to pursue the project. The JV plans to assess the quality of its coal licenses, with the "product focus" to be "Coal-to-Methanol, coal chemical and synthetic gas production."[8] No mention is made of coal-fired power stations, which no longer appear to be part of the overall project.

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Additional data

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