Cahill Energy Barbados Sold to Quantum Utility Generation
Good catch by Patrick Hoyos over at the Broad Street Journal. Kammie Holder and a few others who monitor environmental matters warned us a couple years ago about Cahill Clare Cowan (Energy Barbados) plan to sell after construction of a mega plasma gasification plan was scuttled. Do we have to wait as usual for our leaders to speak on these matters? – David, Blogmaster
But Cahill Energy put out a press release dated March 20, 2019 (yes, dated just a few days ago) letting the world know it had sold off its “Barbados waste-to-energy company, Cahill Energy Barbados, to Quantum Utility Generation, which secured funding to build the plant that Cahill estimates the cost at $350 million USD.” This announcement seems to be a bit late, if I understand things correctly. I heard that the sale took place some time ago and consulting work has been done and permission applied for at Town Planning – Broad Street Journal
Once upon a time there was a Barbados administration which was, shall we say, very creative in finding ways to sell the rights of Barbadians to potential foreign investors with few of us knowing what was going on.
For example, the Hilton. For another one, the national oil terminal. For another, a west coast development that faltered, was bailed out at massive cost to the taxpayer, then left unfinished to weather in the sun and rain through, you could say, all four seasons.
And then there was the “enfant terrible” of them all – the most outrageous disposal of Barbadians’ future rights, in my view – the signing of a contract with a company called Cahill Energy.
Now, having been underground, I have read lots of stuff about what a supposed memorandum contained and how it was allegedly signed by some people in the former administration, all acting no doubt in what they may have considered the best interests of Barbados.
Which, if they did do so, would say a lot about their judgement, because the waste-to-management operation proposed to be built at Vaucluse by Cahill Energy was going to use a highly toxic and dangerous technology which would not vapourise garbage as it promised. It would leave mountains of sludge which still had to be buried somewhere.
But it was only when a multi-million pound investment at Teeside in Britain using the same tech – a risky one known as plasma gasification – went belly-up that the Dolittle Administration cancelled the Barbados project.
Read full article in the Broad Street Journal – Quantum of incredulity
Here is the Press Release announcing the sale. Broad Street Journal posted a 2014 Press Release.
Cahill Energy Barbados acquired by Quantum Utility Generation
Toronto (March 20, 2019) – After four years of development, culminating in full government approval, Cahill Energy Limited has sold its Barbados waste-to-energy company, Cahill Energy Barbados, to Quantum Utility Generation, which secured funding to build the plant that Cahill estimates the cost at $350 million USD.“Cahill Energy is actually a spin-off from Cahill International. As a team we were globe trotters raising funds between $300 million to $1 billion USD. In 2013, we created Cahill Energy simply due to the opportunity to participate hands-on in what we thought then was a miracle: waste-to-energy. We built Cahill Energy to provide a leading edge, environmentally sound solution to the dual challenges of waste management and energy security,” says Clare Cowan, CEO, Cahill Energy Limited. “The ability to turn waste into energy has extraordinary value when you are working with an island that currently spends $1 million USD a month on landfill maintenance alone. Not only do you eliminate the waste but the landfill, as well. That’s exceptional value when you consider the fixed constraints of available land.”Having conducted in-depth analysis of the Caribbean region, Cahill Energy had determined that Barbados represented the ideal location to invest in a waste-to-energy plant.
“While we recognize that the country faces some challenges in the short term due to the impact of the 2008-2009 global economic downturn, we believe that the fundamentals are strong,” adds Cowan.
Many experts were involved in determining if Barbados had the requirements for a waste-to-energy plant. The focus was primarily on engineering and in this regard,Cahill selected Hatch due to their substantive global expertise. Cahill also worked with the most qualified in every discipline, from legal to finance to create the environment to attract the best in development. With Quantum Utility Generation now on board, this objective has been achieved.
Founded in 2010, Quantum Utility Generation, LLC (“QUG”) acquires, develops, operates and optimizes power generation assets in the Americas with a sharp focus on working with both customers and partners to find economic, environmentally sound and reliable power solutions.
The QUG team is power focused. Their team consists of power industry veterans with decades of experience in the acquisition, development, operations, management, financing and most importantly the economic optimization of conventional and renewable energy assets.
Quantum Energy Partners is the parent of Quantum Utility Generation, a Houston-based, private equity manager with more than $9.5 billion USD of capital under its stewardship and is focused solely in the energy space.
Once the team was assembled, Cahill researched and qualified each aspect required, which led the company to determine the benefits for Barbados in having such a plant. Ultimately, the plant will be a game changer for Barbados. Beyond the plant itself, Cahill was excited to see additional benefits such as:
- Waste being used for energy hence the need for landfill will be limited
- Carbon dioxide emissions from the landfill will become negligible
- Energy security rising to 18-24%
- A strong foundation for sustainable tourism
- 500-600 skilled labor jobs created in the build cycle
- 50-60 full time positions when the plant is operational
Following the successful closure of this chapter, Cahill is focusing on research into its next opportunity. Cowan is confident that any initiative Cahill undertakes will once again replicate the success of past projects.
“We have our eye on several business ventures and are excited and encouraged about new avenues and prospects moving forward,” says Cowan.