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Greens urge end to coal by 2030, as Turnbull begs AGL for crumbs

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Source: AAP

The Australian Greens have abandoned efforts to have a carbon price, and instead have favoured an interventionist approach to the energy sector, including mandating the exit of coal generation by 2030, and the banning of petrol cars by the same date.

The policy shift was unveiled by leader Richard di Natale, as the party sought to reposition itself in the wake of disappointing election campaigns, and amid a renewed push by the Far Right to do the exact opposite, and extend the life of coal by at least another half century.

“It’s time for government to step in,” di Natale told the National Press Club in Canberra.

“Government intervention now looks like the only pathway by which we will transition fast enough away from a centralised, polluting energy system to one designed around distributed renewable energy and storage.”

And yet, at the same time, the mining lobby and its new voice in the Coalition, the so-called Monash Forum, is pushing to protect centralised, polluting energy system through its own form of government intervention – a taxpayer-funded coal plant – to keep the industry going another 50 years.

The Coalition sought to paint Turnbull as “staring down” the Monash Forum’s push for new coal generation, and that was good enough for most mainstream media.

But at the same time as the Monash Forum were gathering signatures, the Turnbull camp was making frantic efforts to force AGL to extend the life of Liddell – the oldest and most clapped out power station in the country – or sell it to someone who would.

Energy minister Josh Frydenberg made calls to “connect”a group of manufacturing companies with the now Chinese owned retailer Alinta, with the view of making an offer to AGL. His spokesman said this call was made last week, and insisted it was “coincidental” with the Monash Forum unveiling.

On Tuesday, the day the Monash Forum demands became public, Turnbull rang up the AGL chairman yet again, urging the company to consider a sale of Liddell.

It is clear, however, that any such deal would have to involve government support of the type the hard right wants for new coal-fired generators, despite the denials by both Alinta and the government.

Alinta says, however, it only became interested in Liddell after the calls from Frydenberg and Turnbull before Easter.

“You’re going to have to jump higher than that Malcolm.”

It is also clear that the Coalition continues to ignore the advice of experts, in this the Australian Energy Market Operator.  Turnbull said that without Liddell, the lights would not stay on in NSW.

“We know there is going to be a shortage in dispatchible power, electricity, in New South Wales,” Turnbull said.

Alinta was happy to further the myth. “We are pragmatic,” CEO Jeff Dimery told the ABC. “We understand that it’s nonsense and folly to believe that you can turn off coal-fired power stations today. You do that, and the lights go out on the east coast of Australia.”

This is a gross misrepresentation of the situation and goes against the very findings of the AEMO report that the government commissioned.

It is not the first time that the Coalition has refused to take expert advice, except for when it suits them. And it is certainly not the first, or the last time, that the coal industry has used the light out scare campaign.

Australia’s energy market seems destined, in some manner, to cease being a market. The interventionist approach by both the Greens and the Coalition – one to keep coal, the other to protect it, leaves Labor in the middle ground, but without any prospect of bi-partisan support.

The Greens abandonment of a carbon price will be ironic to many, particularly those who blame it for the death of the Rudd-inspired CPRS in 2010. But that version ignores Labor’s refusal to negotiate with the Greens on its contents.

When Labor had to negotiate with the Greens, in minority government in 2012, together they produced a remarkable policy package. But that package, as we know, was killed by the same right wing Coalition leadership that backed out of its deal on the CPRS, and now wants to protect coal for another generation.

The Greens have now given up on the carbon price idea, at least for now.

“For decades we’ve been told that we should trust the market to decide the most efficient way of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by putting a price on carbon,” di Natale said.

“Pricing carbon may well be the most cost-effective way of lowering climate pollution over the long term and we are very proud of our work to negotiate with the Gillard Government on a carbon price.

“But the science tells us we need a rapid transition. We are facing a climate emergency.  We won’t achieve what’s necessary if the price on pollution is too low, vast sectors of the economy are carved out, and we fail to monitor the schemes effectively.

“The prospect of an effective carbon price in the current parliament is almost non-existent and we simply can’t afford to have another two decades of slow progress. Politics has so far failed us and we’ve reached the point where we can’t waste any more time.”

So the Greens proposal is to phase out all coal power stations by 2030, prevent government funding to prop up ageing clunkers like Liddell, and also to nationalise the interconnectors, as well as establish  government energy retailer.

The irony is that this differs from the Coalition government only in its approach to coal. The Coalition has already bought itself a major generator and retailer, Snowy Hydro, and intends to use its funds to build Snowy 2.0.

On the subject of vehicles, it was interesting to note that the Australia car industry is now following the US in pushing back against any move to impose stricter regulations on emissions

The Australian Automobile Association, which represents the likes of NRMA and RAC, is pushing back against moves to improve Australia’s car fleet, which remains without parallel in the developed world as the dirtiest and least efficient, just like its electricity sector.

Chief executive Michael Bradley said any regulation will increase the price of cars, increase the price of petrol, and warned against going “too far.”  

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  • Paul Surguy

    Alinta must see money in this somewhere, I smell higher energy costs to everybody,i thought Alinta was building a gas fired power station near Mallala in SA north of Adelaide

    • johnnewton

      And who owns Alinta? It was sold for $4billkion to Chow Tai took Enteprises a Hong Kong Jewellery retailer that had according to Bloomberg, been ‘scouring australia for assets.’ EnergyAustralia is wholly woned by China Light and Power, baded in Hong Kong and ‘close to Beijing.’ From Silent Invasion Chapter 6 Trade Invest Control. Zai Jien Australian ownership of our energy.

    • Joe

      Delta had a look at buying Liddell last year and then did a runner. There is no future in buying a clapped out clunker that needs piling in hundreds of millions of dollars to refurb it, all the while the threat of carbon pricing in some form and at the same time RE is becoming cheaper and cheaper all the time. There is simply no business case for Liddell.

      • john

        The company AGL has said in effect { we can not invest in upgrading the power plant because the income from selling energy will give us a negative figure on our profit and loss account}
        Well they did not say that exactly but that is why they will not waste millions doing it.
        If some clowns in your elected parliament decide they know more than the accountants then perhaps it says something about the collective cognitive ability of the said representatives.
        The pathetic aspect of this is that you will pay for the fail of any decision.

        • Joe

          In today’s Australian Financial review ( 4/4/2018 ) is an article from Ben Potter is comment by AGL’s topman, Andy Vessey adding to their decision last year to close Liddell and addressing calls for new Coalers to be built…..”AGL assumed the future would be carbon constrained when it came to plan future investments and ruled out any investment in new coal-fired power. It is very simple: We are overloading the atmosphere with heat-trapping gas and the rest is details. New coal-fired power plants would require billions of dollars and eight to 12 years to come to fruition and were too big a risk for private capital”. Thank you Andy, The Monash Forum await your further insight.

          • john

            The simple fact as Andy Vessey has said we can not invest in upgrading the Liddell plant because it is not financially viable.

            Do we have to look any where else for peats sake ????

            Fixing up the plant will not work it will never turn a dollar of profit
            Can i make it any simpler ????

            Sorry not at you but those who may be reading.,

        • John Saint-Smith

          I sincerely hope that the people have the good sense to ensure that this never happens, but I’m not confident, given our lemming like capacity to mark the ‘blessed Malcolm’ higher in their estimation than Bill Shorten, despite the PM’s abject failure to live up to a single promise he has made, and his imminent passing of the infamous 30th negative news poll.

          • Hettie

            The ppm figure is worthless, but MT is only 2 points ahead of BS now.

          • John Saint-Smith

            BS indeed.

    • Andy

      Not sure of the SA investment, but they have bought Loy Yang B in Latrobe..

      http://www.latrobevalleyexpress.com.au/story/5264746/generators-lukewarm/

      The Chinese are long-term investors. Wouldn’t be surprised that they see that in the long term Australia must have a co-ordinated energy grid, and that the only way that can be achieved is by government intervention, expanding what has just been done with the Federal Govt. buyout of the Snowy, and irrespective of whether there will be a high or low use of coal in the future. They see that in either scenario they will be able to squeeze more out of the Govt that what they will pay AGL now.

      And, slightly off topic, but also interesting to see that Victorian brown coal is being mooted as a possible source for hydrogen to Japan, but the potentially dirty gasification will be done here…

      Ihttp://www.ammoniaenergy.org/kawasaki-moving-ahead-with-lh2-tanker-project/

      • john

        Now is that not a stupid idea.

        • Hettie

          Moronic.

  • Robert Westinghouse

    Centralise energy production in the hands of the Chinese…Yes, please sounds like a great way to move money off-shore….IDIOTS….

    • john

      You do realise some of the network is owned off shore.

      • Robert Westinghouse

        Yes Sir – I know…that makes me sick….We need Australian owned and run…no ANY Foreign company…I used to work for a US Multinational…they do not care and they sucked us for as much as they could get – and did not pay tax.

        • john

          True and being off shore if they make a profit well simple pay no tax.

          • George Darroch

            I don’t care if they’re from China or Chapel Hill.

            What bothers me is the prospect that they pay no tax while profit taking, then have the opportunity to abandon the asset at the end of its life and leave us with the massive cleanup bill.

          • john

            Yes true with the Coal Energy producer actually the usual method of business practice with coal mines they sell it to a $1 dollar company when nearly going out of business and leave it to the state to fix up because the $1 dollar company does not have any assets to fix up their mess.
            That is how you do it smart see:)

        • Ian Porter

          Its OK, let them own the death spiral. They will pay a hefty price for that.

          • John Saint-Smith

            As will we, the helpless bystanders in an economy, a country, and a planet about to be seriously damaged by the products of mindless “coal supremacist” ideology. It makes ball tampering sound like good news!

  • john

    Or for peats sake sanity please.
    If and it is highly likely between 2018 and 2025 there is a solid state battery that comes to market we will see an EV that has a 1000 kilometers of travel and up to 20 minutes of charge time that will sustain moving off ICE vehicles.
    On the second aspect of keeping Liddell open, has anyone on any side looked at the figures?
    It is ludicrous the company that owns it and if I am not wrong got it for a song can not invest the amount of money to upgrade it and make a business case out of it why would anyone make out a reason to do this?
    The income they need with upgrade is less than it costs to produce like DUH.

    • Andy Saunders

      They need substantial capex (not to upgrade, just to keep it on), and then to operate they still need to buy expensive coal and ongoing maintenance. Makes it uneconomic.

    • Ian Porter

      Take all our cars to a power station to charge them for 1000km in 20mins? Hmm better re-consider that one! You do realise that a petrol pump pushes the energy equivalent of a 20MWe connection into your car when you refill. This needs to be addressed.

      • Ian

        Wow, and here my little Corolla pumps out closer to 65 kW @ 25% efficiency. My tank holds a gross 0.45 MWh of fuel (0.4 MWh useable). I think that your figures need a bit of a check.

        • Ian Porter

          Gallon of gasolene equivalent calculated for gasoline in US gallons at 114000 BTU per gallon (is 7594 kilocalories per litre) The base GGE is 33.41kwh/USgal. Gas pumps can put out >30gpm. At that flowrate it equates to 16.7MWe equivalent.

      • Hettie

        Not at all. Plug in and charge at home if you have solar panels and battery. Or at work, or in the shopping centre carpark.
        If charging does take 20 minutes, the charging stations will all have cafes attached. Or at least be in shopping strips that have cafes.
        Mad not to.

        • Ian Porter

          If you can charge a battery that takes a car 1000km, its big battery Hettie. If you can charge that battery in only 20minutes, and if there are a bunch of cars there at the same time, you are going to have to have a power station attached never mind the cafe. This is just simple physics

          • Hettie

            And if cars with that range become the norm, then charging stations to cope will also become the norm.
            In the days when I worked as a pharmaceutical sales rep, I averaged 300km a week in Sydney, 1500km a week on country trips from Sydney via Armidale to Tenterfield then back via Tamworth to Sydney. Most city drivers even with a 30 km commute each way to work would need a full recharge only once every 3 weeks. Or a nightly trickle top up.
            These are not like the old nicad batteries with a memory that meant you had to discharge them completely every time or finish up with 10 minutes battery life, are they.
            Those contemplating trips from Sydney to Perth across the Nullarbor would want to be fully charged, and the guy with the charging station at Birdsville would need serious grunt, but on a day to day basis I really don’t see a big problem.

          • I Porter

            Hettie, You are missing the point. We are not talking normal everyday driving when discussing 20minute recharges of 1000km range batteries. That most drivers do less than ~40km/day is understood and overnight charging for this duty is the norm: I’m not arguing against that. What I reacted to was the amount of power required to top up big batteries quickly and that requires massive grunt on a enormous scale. The simple fact is that the physics for this duty are not going to change over time.

          • Hettie

            See my reply to solar guy, above.
            There is also this to consider.
            You would agree, I think, that long range driving is dangerous to both the driver and other road users. Crazy deadlines and extreme fatigue diminish decision making speed.
            Having battery capacity legally limited to, say, 3 hours of travel at highway speeds would force drivers to take a break, recharging themselves as well as the vehicle.
            Being able to go 1,000 km non stop is a recipe for disaster.

          • solarguy

            It isn’t just a matter of driver fatigue, I get your point, but it’s the need to take a break as regulated by the drivers log book after x amount of hrs behind the wheel that may not correlate with a charging station. Hence the range needed to save wasting time refuelling.

            As for passenger cars not a problem so much

          • Hettie

            This area is clearly above my pay grade.

          • Hettie

            So what is the story about the Qld electric highway? That’s a string of charging stations, installed pretty quickly. Are any of them capable of a 20 minute 1,000 km char g e?

          • solarguy

            Hettie, Both you and I Porter have points that are correct. Say a Tesla model S needs to fully charge a fairly flat battery and that battery is 100kwh capacity, with a super charger it is full in 20mins to get 1000km range, with 90% efficientcy that’s 110kwh used. Now even if we aren’t fully EV, one could conclude that there could be 20 Tesla’s an hour going through a main station on say the Pacific Hwy between Sydney and Brisbane, over 24hrs that’s 52MWh of power needed. It will need feed from very high voltage cable and it’s own sub-station.

            I’m not saying it can’t be done, but it will present a big problem in some locations.

            My eldest son is in the trucking game and we were discussing this over Easter, interstate semi’s require one fill only for 1000km range due to time constraints, deadlines. Imagine the energy they will require.

          • Hettie

            I take your point. And yet, and yet, surely the network of petrol supply points evolved alongside the growth of ICE transport. …..

          • solarguy

            Well of course it did evolve and so will transport electrification, plus we will be able to do it all with RE 100%. But it is going to take a lot of infra structure planning and cost for charging stations like that as the oil dries up.

          • Alastair Leith

            Tesla is imagining that trucking energy requirement with their latest offering.

            “We also know that the fully electric “Class 8 truck” – which is the largest of heavy duty freight trucks – will have a 200kWh battery pack; a range of up to 800km (500 miles) on a single charge; and will be able to add 400 miles (643km) of range in 30 minutes of charging.”

            https://reneweconomy.com.au/tesla-semi-trucks-first-electric-load-tesla-batteries-27913/

          • solarguy

            Yes Alastair I know that. Did you have another point?

          • neroden

            Tesla’s plan for rural routes like that is to have their own batteries on site, and their own solar farms and / or wind farms nearby.

            It will only present a problem in urban locations, where a big high voltage power feed should be possible.

          • solarguy

            Yes of course, big investment will be needed though.

    • solarguy

      It’s a government plan to use tax payers (our money) to be pissed up against the wall to fund the stupidity.

    • Alastair Leith

      AGL made way more money from Liddel in a few years than it spent on it. There would be debt associated with the remediation and rehabilitation of the coal mine and power station site. Often resource companies on sell to penny dreadfuls that then go insolvent and pass the debt to you and me.

  • Joe

    I watched the Richard on my TV giving his speech. He didn’t completely abandon a carbon price. He did say that a carbon price on its own is not enough when we have a climate emergency needing immediate action now…” we have no time to waste”… were his words. He wants government to directly involve itself in the fast ending of coal and a carbon price can be part of the overall suite of actions to do that.

    • JIm

      Spot on

      • Joe

        Cheers

    • Hettie

      Exactly

      • Joe

        Cheers

  • Chris Fraser

    Liddell Schmiddell, I suspect REaders wont have huge concern. All they will do is find a retailer who offtakes only 100% renewable … and won’t touch Liddell with a barge pole.And if Snowy 2.0 buys low-priced Liddell energy to create storage, by then REaders will be able to afford home batteries.

    • Ian Porter

      Better bang for buck than Snowy 2.0 would be empowering consumers with subsidies on BHM battery storage just like STCs on PV. Same revolution will come. Because the govt would only need to fund (say) 25% of the capital cost, this would be a far better than wholesale fully funding a PHS system which has not even yet passed the pub test feasibility study. Its well understood that storage closest to loads is the best practice

  • JIm

    I didn’t hear Di Natale abandon carbon pricing. Sounds like The Greens would examine proposals on their merits. The question is would they only accept a carbon price if it does all the heavy lifting across the whole economy. If so isn’t that setting the bar higher than for any other policy?

    • Joe

      Jim, please see my comment below.

    • Hettie

      Carbon price not possible under present Gov’t, but would be one of a suite of measures under their plans.
      Coal and ICE vehicles gone by 2030.

    • Alastair Leith

      Given it’s Greens national policy and Greens forced Gillard’s hand on introducing a price on carbon I don’t think so either… but there is now (thankfully) a recognition that it’s not as simple as putting a price on carbon. And even the one we had was extensive on exemptions (export affected industries).

      Not as simple because it’s politically very challenging to defend from attacks by LNC, their mates in the media, shock jocks and resource sector war chests.

      Not as simple because various sectors are impacted to different extents by a carbon price if it’s just applied on an emissions CO2-e basis (and equating methane to CO2 equivalent is itself contentious).

      Not as simple because the kinds of prices placed on C internationally are not in any way reflective of the long term climate, economic, environmental and societal impact, and a domestic price undercut by international carbon trading would render it ineffective.

      The RET, CEFC and ARENA (the last two Greens initiatives) are arguably more effective in the energy sector (thought the RET has no investment future), but there’s agriculture (54% of national emissions using GWP20 once land clearing, enteric fermentation and savanna burning are included), buildings energy efficiency still to be invested in, industrial processes and transport. Arguably direct interventions and incentives in all these areas will cultivate systemic change sooner than a finance wiz kid’s wet dream.

  • Matt

    Greens urge end to coal, end to petrol cars, a living wage for everyone (with no obligation to work). Nobody can take this seriously.

    • john

      Some aspects of what he said is before the curve.
      End of petrol cars when solid state battery’s happen true.
      Living wage in fact this will happen because of automation of the work place.
      As to energy production it will happen because RE is cheaper with the backup of storage
      Any thing else you want to address?

    • Joe

      I take him seriously and all that he says is already coming to pass.

    • Farmer Dave

      Perhaps you do not take the climate emergency seriously then, Matt?

    • nakedChimp

      Stupid people never take anything seriously – that’s why they are stupid.
      To explain why this stuff could work would take a little while.
      But unfortunately for us (and you) you’re already preoccupied and not here to get educated.
      Have a nice day and troll somewhere else please.

  • Patrick Comerford

    Fear not friends if Turnbulls involved in any deal it will be stillborn. 29 down one to go and then the hatchet comes out.

    • Hettie

      But, Dutton?

  • Peter G

    Hey, it was fun calling Alinta this morning and letting them know how much good publicity they are getting from the Liddell jawboning.

    • Joe

      Any movement in the share price?

  • Ken Dyer

    The LNP COALition is a sad and sorry sight these days. Coherence to the party line is non-existent, and the dissension in the ranks is as bad or worse than the Rudd-Gillard years. How has it come to this? The people voted. Hopefully next time they vote, they will vote for a stable political system, something they have not had for a decade.

    • Ian Porter

      As long as humans are in it for themselves: decisions made on basis of re-electability rather than good practice, this will continue. We need randomly selected citizens into our parliaments asap and put a smart end to this nonsense.

    • Hettie

      The only party withe fully acceptable policies on the environment and human rights is the Greens. There are idiots within the membership making total fools of themselves, and one Senator who has lost the first place on the ticket for the next election.
      In any other party, would a rank and file member accusing a candidate of poor behaviour get a mention? Especially if the accusations had been addressed and found baseless? But because it was the Greens, it was all over the press.
      The party is stable.
      However, not strong enough for Gov’t yet, but strong enough for good influence on ALP Gov’t.
      LNP can’t win next time. Like the boy who cried wolf, they have trotted out the imaginary terrorist so often that no one believes it any more, and if Labor has any sense they will push that line in an election campaign.
      The internal division in the Liberal Party is far worse than the Rudd Gillard discord ever was, and the way they have treated our civil rights, the disadvantaged, the climate and refugees is unforgivable.
      The major question is, when will the election come?
      And how much more damage can they do in the meantime?
      I just hope the Greens score a few more lower house seats, and that the Senate loses the half term nutters in favour of more Greens.

      • Alastair Leith

        Talk to Fairfax about that, and pulling a commissioned article analysing the Adani situation for “fear of a Labor backlash”.

  • Ken Dyer

    Interesting to see the comment at the end of the article about the ICE vehicle industry.
    This article from Cleantechnica seems to indicate that the threat to the ICE vehicle industry will come from the electricity generators themselves. I winder if the auto associations have woken up to that yet.
    https://cleantechnica.com/2018/04/02/as-demand-for-electricity-falls-utilities-look-to-electric-cars-to-save-them/?

    Once the NEG gets clobbered after the next election, it will be full steam ahead.

    • Ian Porter

      Indeed Ken. It’s in (part coal) generators best interests to get as much load (esp overnight load) onto the system as possible, hence become a transport fuel source. For every 100k cars on the road, you’ll need 500MWe generation to satisfy the demand. This will be a case of vested interests fighting each other for dominance. As long as the climate is the winner, I’m all in as a willing spectator to suck up the action.

  • Farmer Dave

    I am very pleased to see di Natale using the phrase “climate emergency”. He may be the first political party leader to have done so in Australia. We need to see that phrase in increasingly common use; eventually there will be a point at which it’s implications start to dawn on people.

    As well as the policies discussed in this article, I hope the Greens also plan to ban all future fossil fuel exploration and the expansion of existing fossil fuel production.

  • Hettie

    The so called government really are a box of tools. Very dull tools.
    Coal, moribund coal is our biggest export, and rather than look for other exports to replace it, they will fight tooth and claw to maintain the status quo despite all evidence that this is a very bad idea.
    So as the time ticks away, nothing is done to plan for a coal free future. Of course unless it is coal free there will be no future, but that’s just too bad.
    RdN put forward a good plan today. But he did not rule out a carbon price, he said it was a necessary part of a suite of measures to move to a Carbon free future. Won’t happen under this Gov’t, but this Gov’t, like the coal, is doomed.
    Hallelujah.

    • Nick Kemp

      Fortunately the economics of coal are poor these days – unless coal becomes free we will go coal free. I’d like to see this lot hauled up before some sort of royal commission in the future but would also be (less) satisfied if they lose the next election and disappear forever

      • Hettie

        As RdN said, a federal ICAC with teeth is desperately needed, and a mandatory break ?5 years?between leaving parliament and woking for any major industry.
        Regulation of political donations too.
        As things are, the Coalition pollies are working for big industry, not for the Australian People. Some ALP too.

  • Gongite

    It’s pretty poor that organisations like the NRMA and RAC use the AAA to advocate for a position that most of their members probably wouldn’t support.

    • rob

      True that! I’ve been an RAA member for 40 years ….calling them tomoz! not happy jan

      • Gongite

        Go for it. I just rang NRMA and complained. Asked for a written response.

    • john

      I will look at what you said if my membership is so obtuse i will tell them to get up to speed.

  • Ian Porter

    I’m wondering how AAA chief Michael Bradley came up with his line that petrol prices will increase (with regulation). If the regulations involve the banning of ICE vehicles, that means petrol demand will fall. Where I went to school demand decreases resulted in LOWER prices. So what planet is he on?

  • Pedro

    I will buy Liddell power station for a dollar, and turn it into a retirement home for LNP Politicians. They can all sit around the furnace toasting marshmallows remembering the good old days when coal was good for you.

    • Ian

      Nah, chain up those lovely lads on the ‘forum’ and put them to work. Most will not last ’till lunch time.

  • Matt Haggis

    As I understand it, current projections have coal ending totally by 2032, so I guess 2030 isn’t much of a stretch. Not exactly an out there policy position.

    • Hettie

      We have coal reserves for hundreds of years, but if we burn it, we cook the planet. We have to leave the coal in the ground, go to zero emissions as fast as possible if not sooner, AND adopt agricultural practices that will pull vast amounts of CO2 out of the air into the soil *and keep it there*.
      Unless we can get CO2 down below 350 ppm, soon, there is no hope of staying below the dreaded 2° above pre-industrial temperature.
      Feedback loops take over and the climate goes crazy. Crazier. You ain’t seen nothing yet.

  • DJR96

    Quite frankly we don’t need to set an end date for the coal generation industry.
    Most of them will have to retire through natural attrition as they reach the end of their viable lifetimes. And the rest will simply get squeezed out of the market over time too.

    So any government could simply announce a policy of “no new coal-fired generators will be built in Australia again, ever”.

  • Alexander Hromas

    In order to keep global average temperature rise to 2 deg.C as agreed in the Paris accord we can only burn 40% of our DEVELOPED coal reserves and 60% of our DEVELOPED oil and gas reserves. This will give us a 50% chance of avoiding runaway global warming. Like playing Russian roulette with 3 bullets in a 6 shooter. To keep the average to 1.5 deg.C we need to stop burning coal NOW and only burn 40% of our DEVELOPED oil and gas reserves. I have highlighted DEVELOPED as this means no new exploration licenses and no developments of known reserves that have not been tapped as yet i.e. when you mine 40% of the current reserves of say the Blair Athol coal lease, stop, shut up shop and call Simms to dispose of the machinery.
    The Greens are the only party to have grasped this situation. The rest bumble along as if we had all the time in the world. As Confucius once said “he who keeps his mind while all others are panicking has failed to appreciate the gravity of the situation”

    • Hettie

      I like your mind.
      As well as bringing CO2 emissions to zero with all speed, it will be necessary to draw CO2 out of the air and lock it away in the soil.
      Google Soil C Quest.