In the last week clean coal has been back in the news with energy minister Josh Frydenberg looking to Japan as an example for Australia. Since the Fukushima disaster Japan has replaced most of its nuclear capacity with new clean coal/ low emissions technology. With much of Australia’s existing power infrastructure due for replace, its large coal reserves and the relative infant state of renewable energy technologies clean coal seems like the perfect solution to Australia’s energy problems. But, is clean coal just a pipedream? Should Australia be subsidising it?
Australia has set the goal of reducing its emissions to 26-28 per cent on 2005 levels by 2030. Since the repeal of the unpopular carbon tax Australia’s primary method of achieving these reductions has been a 23.5% renewable energy target by 2020. In addition to this various State governments have set even more ambitious RETs such as Queensland 50% target … Read the rest