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An upgrade for Australia’s coal-fired power plants

Published by , Editorial Assistant
World Coal,

The NSW Minerals Council has endorsed today’s comments on energy policy from Prime Minister Turnbull and welcomed his leadership in advocating new technology coal-fired power stations as an option for meeting Australia's future energy needs.

“This issue is particularly relevant for NSW as we consider how the State’s future energy needs will be met, as well as because our high-quality coal is NSW’s largest export commodity by value,” NSW Minerals Council CEO, Stephen Galilee said today.

Speaking at the National Press Club in Canberra, the Prime Minister said:

“Here’s the current picture - old, high emissions coal-fired power stations are closing down, reducing baseload capacity. They cannnot simply be replaced by gas - because it’s too expensive - or by wind or solar because they are intermittent… as the world’s largest coal exporter we have a vested interest in showing that we can provide both lower emissions and reliable base load power with state of the art clean coal fired technology… coal does have a role in the future. You’d think if anyone had an interest in doing something smart with clean coal it would be us, but we don’t have one power station capable of doing it.”

"Coal currently provides around 85% of NSW electricity, and while renewables' share of energy supply is growing, it is still relatively small and requires backup baseload power to ensure reliability of supply," Mr Galilee said.

"Upgrading existing coal-fired power plants with new low emissions technology would ensure supply of reliable baseload power to NSW homes and businesses for decades, using existing energy infrastructure, distribution networks, and fuel sourced from existing NSW mines close to existing power stations."

"NSW is blessed with an abundant supply of high quality thermal coal that can be used by these new technology power plants to generate electricity with up to 40% lower emissions than some existing power stations," he said.

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