Australia’s CCS Flagship Program Funding Affected
Australia is the world’s biggest coal exporter. It needs to invest maximum in carbon capture and storage. If Australia can come up with retrofitting models that can be fitted with existing coal power plants, it can extend the life span of its coal. Nothing better than capturing the carbon and sequestering it.
If Australian universities can do research in fields like saline aquifers, ocean storage – (most of the potential identified by Australia are in the ocean for storing of CO2) and
Coal bed methane among others, it would be leading the world in Carbon capture and Storage research. The Australian Government should be funding the most in doing research in different types of carbon capture. Carbon capture and Storage Flagship program of Australia is a very progressive and positive one.
The Australian Government has a comprehensive climate change policy to support its commitment to reduce Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions by 60 per cent on 2000 levels by 2050.
Everything was going well till the floods in the Queensland province. The floods caused extensive damage to the existing infrastructure and livelihood of millions of people has been threatened due to its extensive devastation. That was an immense national challenge of rebuilding flood-affected regions across Australia. The Government needed AUS $ 5.6 billion to rebuild the flood affected regions. The Government has decided that two-thirds of that funding of flood affected areas will be delivered through spending cuts across many flagship programs. The CCS program is one such program that faces a spending cut.
The Australian PM has announced spending cuts and deferrals of AUS$250 million to its Flagship CCS program and the Global CCS Institute to help pay for Queensland flood relief. AUS$160 million will be deferred until after 2015 while AUS$90 million will be cut from the budget.
It is somewhat paradoxical. The floods in Australia many propound is because of Climate change, a consequence of burning coal for power. The CCS flagship program is a visionary and hence the Australian government should spend more money in doing research in fields like storing carbon dioxide in products viz Gasoline, cement, fertilizer, and in biomass co firing, mineral carbonation etc. The more innovations Australia makes, the more life they give for their coal and the mother earth.