Australia and China create low emission coal partnership

Australia and China have launched the Clean Coal Technology Partnership fund to accelerate the development of low emission coal technologies to reduce power station emissions.

The $1.1 million fund is an initiative of the Australia-China Joint Co-ordination Group on Clean Coal Technology (JCG), which itself is funded by the government's low emissions coal initiative.

Martin Ferguson, the minister for resources and energy, welcomed this latest development to create new low emission technologies, such as ox-fuel combustion, post combustion, and gasification.

"Australia and China are committed to finding ways of reducing carbon emissions from burning fossil fuels," Ferguson said.

"This is important because the International Energy Agency (IEA) estimates that demand for coal will continue to grow by nearly two-thirds to 2035 based on current trends.

"Given Australia is the largest coal exporter in the world and China comprises half of global coal consumption, it is vital that we work together to develop technologies that can reduce greenhouse gas emissions associated with coal.

"The IEA recognises that carbon capture and storage is a necessary technology in order to limit global average temperature increases to two degrees and forecasts that it will provide one-fifth of the required abatement by 2035."

This announcement comes only weeks after the introduction of the carbon tax and the uncertainty of future viability this causes for many coal fired power stations around Australia.

The Munmorah power station has already been closed, and some Victorian power stations are slated to shut down soon as well.

This latest partnership between Australia and China is focused on providing research and industry support.

The Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (ATSE) will manage the fund.

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