PERTH (miningweekly.com) – A new report developed by Australia’s gas industry bodies has demonstrated the pivotal role that gas and gas infrastructure would play in Australia’s low carbon energy future.
The Gas Vision 2050 report outlines a roadmap to decarbonising the natural gas sector to help meet Australia’s emissions reduction commitments over the coming decades and documents research and progress being made in advancing transformational technologies.
“Transformational technologies to realise gas decarbonisation are being adopted by industry, including hydrogen, biogas, bio- liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), renewable methane and carbon capture and storage (CCS). Hydrogen can be produced through renewable electricity in electrolysis to produce green hydrogen or from natural gas combined with CCS to produce blue hydrogen,” the report reads.
“While these are different processes, they both provide decarbonised gas. Industry is already investing and moving beyond the research and development phase with demonstration projects underway to deploy a broad range of these technologies as well as commercial-scale CCS project at Gorgon carbon dioxide reinjection project in Western Australia.”
The major conclusion of the report is that net-zero emissions can be reached with hydrogen at half the cost of electrification.
“In the next few years, natural gas, LPG and liquefied natural gas (LNG) will be supplemented by other gaseous fuels such as hydrogen, biomethane and renewable gas, creating exciting new opportunities. Indeed, in 2020, the first Australian homes will receive a blend of green hydrogen in their gas.
“The work we are doing aims to minimise impacts to customers while creating additional options to reduce emissions. Initially this will involve blending at low concentrations, followed by scaling up as we learn by doing. We are on this pathway, but more work needs to be done,” the report reads.
The vision for Australia is to continue to transform gas resources into products and services to enhance national prosperity while achieving carbon neutrality, the industry bodies said in a statement on Friday, adding that this strategic approach to reducing emissions could use developing technologies to also deliver jobs, growth and export benefits.
“The report highlights the vital role of natural gas in emissions reduction through fuel switching from more emissions-intensive fuels to gas. Gas is also one of Australia’s most important exports, contributing A$47-billion to our economy in 2019-20,” said the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association’s CEO Andrew McConville.
Gas currently provides around 21% of Australia’s end-use energy consumption, with gas infrastructure delivering more energy than electricity infrastructure.