|International perspectives on coal R&D|
|Dr Phil Gurney|
BCIA CEO & Director
|The rhetoric around coal is changing once again. Here in Australia, last year’s state-wide blackout in South Australia has been the driver for a review of energy security. The focus, at least at a Federal level, is now on how to build an energy system that can not only meet our commitments to reduce emissions, but is also reliable and lowest cost. |
|Our Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has confirmed that his Government will take a technology-neutral approach to reducing emissions. This will include not just wind and solar, but will examine how clean coal and CCS, together with technologies such as pumped hydro storage, can support grid stability and overcome the issues caused by intermittency.|
But it is not just Australia that is focused on how technology development in coal and CCS can contribute to the global push towards lower costs and lower emissions. This issue of Perspectives takes in the views of the international community. Gianni Serra, from Sotocarbo, explains how Italy’s focus on coal is changing, while Professor Zhenyu Liu of Beijing University looks at the clean coal technology R&D being supported by the 13th five year plan in China.
In America, it is clear that the new administration is taking a radically different approach to the previous one. While only time will tell how this will play out on a political level, Jason Laumb of the EERC in North Dakota presents a view from the technology perspective, looking primarily at the development of CCS in the northern states of the USA. As in many parts of the world, the Czech Republic has considerable reserves of lignite. Stephen Mills of the IEA Clean Coal Centre looks at the R&D activities helping to build an environmentally sustainable future for coal in that region.
Our final article in the international perspectives series comes from Joanne Tanner of Monash University. Joanne, who is now a lecturer at Monash, was supported through her PhD by BCIA. The international links that she built through R&D collaborations, particularly with Germany, have helped to shape the successful start to her academic career. Joanne looks at some of the internationally linked R&D projects underway at Monash University, and the benefits to local researchers.
Finally, but by no means least, this issue features the R&D work at Federation University. Federation University has recently built an extensive analytical chemistry lab, located in the Latrobe Valley in Victoria. Rahul Chowdhury shares with us the progress on his work in looking at the effects of fly ash on carbon capture solvents.
As always, I trust that you will find the articles in this issue of Perspectives of interest. If you have a story on the work you are doing, please get in contact - we are always interested to hear from those undertaking work on brown coal developments, whether in Australia or internationally.