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Sep 22 2020

Roadmap takes sensible direction to lower emissions

The Australian Energy Council welcomes the release of the Federal Government’s Technology Investment Roadmap.

The AEC Chief Executive, Sarah McNamara, said, “It is important to find the best means to reduce emissions at the lowest cost to households and across the economy.”

Major advances in technology will be critical for a low and ultimately net zero carbon economy, according to the AEC.

“This roadmap recognises that need to decarbonise across all parts of the economy. Importantly, it goes beyond electricity to consider the potential for technology to reduce emissions from the other two-thirds of Australia’s emissions.

“We welcome its commitment to support funding for innovation and to encourage private sector investment as well as its prioritisation of key areas.

“It’s important funding is reserved for genuine innovation and to help establish early stage clean technologies rather than subsidise already commercial or mature technologies. For that reason, changes to the remit of the Clean Energy Finance Corporation and ARENA is a pragmatic use of taxpayer funds.

“Dramatic falls in the price of solar have shown how technological advancements can rapidly change our approach to achieving lower emissions.

“Equally, many technologies that show early promise, such as geothermal, can just as quickly fail to progress. This underlines the need for careful consideration of the most efficient technologies, which is a strength of the approach outlined today.

“We support the development of hydrogen, and the decision to sensibly direct Carbon Capture and Storage’s (CCS) focus to natural gas and hydrogen production, which represent realistic opportunities for this technology. Previous efforts to develop CCS to allow retrofitting of coal-fired power stations have not been commercially successful.

“The cheapest new sources of generation are solar and wind, but their variability requires flexible support to ensure system reliability, and that means a role for storage and gas, particularly peaking gas plants.”

About the Australian Energy Council

The Council represents 22 major electricity and downstream natural gas businesses operating in the competitive wholesale and retail energy markets. These businesses collectively generate the overwhelming majority of electricity in Australia, sell gas and electricity to over 10 million homes and businesses, and are major investors in renewable energy generation.

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