Melbourne-based clean power company Cougar Energy has begun a recruitment process to secure a new chief executive officer. The company’s continued success in the implementation of its Asian strategy and associated project development has coincided with the resignation of founder and chief executive officer Dr Len Walker, who will remain as an executive director.
Dr Walker has expertise in underground coal gasification (UCG) which will be crucial in preparing a technical team to implement the company’s upcoming Asian projects. In its need to prepare for continued growth, the company says an executive with additional skills specifically related to the Asian region will be sought to build a strong future in the region.
Dr Len Walker says he will give his full support to the new chief executive officer. “The past few years have been extremely challenging, particularly given the political motivation evident in the shutdown of our Kingaroy plant. Pressing forward from this experience has only been possible because of the dedication of all our existing staff.
“The appointment of a new CEO will inject new energy into the company as it expands and develops its project options in the Asian region,” he says.
Cougar’s chairman Malcolm McAully says, “Len has led this company with passion and persistence through both the severe challenges of 2010 and in developing our new strategic focus over the past 12 months. He can now focus his energies on commercial project development and the company can continue to benefit from his significant UCG expertise.”
The UCG process converts coal in situ to a synthetic product (syngas) that may be used for a range of downstream processes, including power generation and the production of petrochemical products.
Cougar has the longest Australian association with UCG technology, working since 1996 with its UCG technology provider Ergo Exergy Technologies of Canada. The company is working to develop a $500 million commercially viable 400MW power station using UCG technology at a site near Kingaroy in Queensland, Australia.
It is currently preparing a $34 million legal case to pursue its rights to develop the project and claim damages from the Queensland government for its 2011 shutdown of the project without evidence of any real or potential environmental harm.
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