AEC: Net zero requires hydrogen

Hydrogen image

In a piece written by AEC Chief Executive Sarah McNamara, the council said it was “unavoidable” that Australia would be expected to achieve net zero emissions by 2050 and beyond as part of its Paris Agreement obligations.

“To reach the Paris Agreement’s temperature goals, we need ambitious long-term targets,” said Ms McNamara.

“Like many similar organisations, the AEC considers that the Australian economy is better served if it now explicitly recognises this inevitability, i.e. it should name the elephant so it can get started on eating it.”

Ms McNamara said the in times of low sun and wind, Australia would still need to fall back on gas-fired generation, which “the ‘net’ in ‘net zero’ allows”.

“Heavy transport and industrial processes will require hydrogen, most likely produced from electrolysis,” she said.

“These parts of the economy desperately need technological advancement to reduce emissions economically.

“This is why the Federal Government’s Technology Roadmap is so important.

“It correctly focusses on how to increase research investment in hydrogen, electrification and the capturing of fugitive emissions in resource extraction.”

The government is developing its national Technology Investment Roadmap to drive investment in low emissions technologies and its initial discussion paper was released in May this year.

Submissions of feedback on the roadmap closed earlier this week.

The AEC represents 24 major electricity and downstream natural gas businesses, including AGL, Origin and EnergyAustralia.

For more information visit the AEC website.

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