“Australia Institute research shows the Net Zero by 2050 plan is a fraud while it continues funding technologies that extend the use of gas and coal, and increasing Australia’s emissions,” said Richie Merzian, climate & energy program director at the Australia Institute.
“Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS) technology has failed to meet every major target set for it, despite benefiting from over $4 billion in committed support from successive Australian Governments over the last two decades.
“Another $85 million in public funding for CCS projects is unlikely to lower emissions in Australia. Using Chevron’s much maligned Gorgon CCS site as a guide, we can expect such projects to struggle to ever reach full operation while releasing millions of tonnes of emissions along the way.
“The majority of so-called CCS projects around the world are actually for a practice called ‘Enhanced Oil Recovery’, which injects CO2 into depleted oil and gas fields with the aim to increase oil production. EOR has the potential to increase the amount of oil recovered by up to 40% and extend the oil field’s life by decades.
“Hidden in the Federal Government’s climate funding announcement today is support for an Enhanced Oil Recovery project. This practice should be banned in Australia, not fast-tracked with taxpayer funds intended for climate solutions.
“The Federal Government has invented the deceptive term ‘clean hydrogen’ to include hydrogen made from fossil-fuels under the same tagline as genuine zero-emissions hydrogen made from renewable energy. Hydrogen made from gas and coal creates more emissions than if the fossil fuels themselves were burnt directly.
“A significant portion of the Federal Government’s additional $120 million for so-called ‘clean hydrogen’ has been muddied by financing dirty fossil fuel-based hydrogen projects. This is antithetical to the intent of funding hydrogen for emissions reduction.
“A credible climate policy would provide zero support to CCS projects and exclusively support renewable hydrogen in any hydrogen funding.”