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EQTEC (LON: EQT) shares are gaining Thursday after the company said it has reinforced its commitment to California, forest fire prevention, and clean energy production by investing an additional $2.8 million in the North Fork project in California.
The additional investment will increase the company's equity in the project to 49%.
In addition, the company also provided a $4.5 million convertible loan facility to fund the development of the project, which will result in a 2 MWe biomass-to-energy plant based on EQTEC Advanced Gasification Technology.
This year, the project has experienced continued delays due to the pandemic and fires near the construction site, alongside shipping delays and legally enforced work stoppages.
However, EQTEC said its technology has been delivered on-site, construction work has progressed to where foundations are in place, and steel structures have been erected, with much of the core gasification equipment installed.
The three managing members of the North Fork Community Power Project, which are the EQTEC, development partner Phoenix Biomass Energy and local community representative North Fork Community Development Council, have been working with the project bondholders, Lapis Advisers, and an investor member to negotiate terms for additional funding to support the project through to live operation.
David Palumbo, CEO of EQTEC, commented: “The North Fork project is such an important one for the local community, for California and for EQTEC. The plant at North Fork will receive forestry waste that could otherwise fuel fires, instead using it as fuel for electricity to the local community and biochar for other local applications, all produced in an efficient and environmentally friendly way.
“Production of biochar and the benefits of forest and watershed protection, carbon sequestration and soil enrichment will be a first for us, yet one for which we are seeing growing demand. EQTEC is committed to completing this plant and to building more such plants throughout California, with North Fork as a reference.”
EQTEC shares rose to a high of 1.25p following the announcement.
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