Climate Change & Technology
It will be virtually impossible to limit global temperature increases to two degrees without carbon capture and storage technology.
In 2006 the Australian Coal Association established the COAL21 Fund, with a commitment to raise $1 billion over ten years to support the development of low emission technologies for coal.
The COAL21 Fund is a world first voluntary initiative and involves a whole of industry approach to development technological solutions for the mining and use of coal.
The focus of the fund has been to support the development of Carbon Capture and Storage projects. CCS is the only technology available to significantly reduce emissions from the use of fossil fuels including coal and gas-fired power generation, natural gas processing associated with LNG production and other industrial activities such as cement and steel manufacturing.
As a major exporter of coal and LNG as well as being a large domestic user of fossil fuels, Australia has a strategic interest in the development of CCS technology.
CCS is an essential part of a global response to climate change. The International Energy Agency (IEA) has found that a ten year delay in the availability of CCS would increase the cost of achieving a 450 Scenario by $1.14 trillion between now and 2035. The IEA concluded that “intensive investment and effort to demonstrate the commercial viability of CCS is the rational course of action for governments seriously intent on restricting the average global temperature rise to no more than 2oC”.
Photo by Robert Billington, courtesy of NSWMC