BASELOAD BILL BUSTER

RE­PORT BACKS NQ COAL POWER

Townsville Bulletin - - FRONT PAGE - DOMANII CAMERON

A NEW re­port ar­gues build­ing a high ef­fi­ciency, low emis­sion coal- fired power sta­tion would drive down power bills in North Queens­land.

A re­port com­mis­sioned by the Min­er­als Coun­cil of Aus­tralia says a HELE coal- fired plant would cost less to build than the amount tax­pay­ers spend on sub­si­dies for re­new­ables.

A new plant, us­ing ul­tra su­per- crit­i­cal black coal, would cost $ 2.2 bil­lion to build, with sub­si­dies to re­new­ables cost­ing $ 3 bil­lion a year.

The re­port said elec­tric­ity pro­duced by a new coal- fired power plant would cost be­tween $ 40 and $ 78 per megawatt hour, less than half the cur­rent price of so­lar, which costs be­tween $ 90 and $ 171 per MWh.

MCA ex­ec­u­tive direc­tor Greg Evans said North Queens­land needed low cost, re­li­able elec­tric­ity if it was to de­velop fur­ther.

“There is no rea­son why a new high ef­fi­ciency, low emis­sion coal gen­er­a­tor could not be lo­cated in North Queens­land,” he said.

A NEW re­port ar­gues that build­ing a high ef­fi­ciency, low emis­sion coal- fired power sta­tion would drive down power bills in North Queens­land.

A re­port com­mis­sioned by the Min­er­als Coun­cil of Aus­tralia says a HELE coal- fired plant would cost less to build than what tax­pay­ers spend on sub­si­dies for re­new­ables.

A new plant, us­ing ul­tra su­per- crit­i­cal black coal, would cost $ 2.2 bil­lion to build, with sub­si­dies to the re­new­ables sec­tor cost­ing $ 3 bil­lion a year.

Elec­tric­ity would cost be­tween $ 40 and $ 78 per MWh, less than half the price of so­lar, which costs be­tween $ 90 and $ 171 per MWh.

MCA ex­ec­u­tive direc­tor Greg Evans said North Queens­land needed low cost, re­li­able elec­tric­ity if it was to de­velop fur­ther.

“A new HELE coal plant can sup­ply this,” he said. “There is no rea­son why a new high ef­fi­ciency, low emis­sion coal gen­er­a­tor could not be lo­cated in North Queens­land.”

The re­port also re­vealed vari­able re­new­able en­ergy sources could not de­liver sys­tem strength, in­er­tia, and volt­age con­trol es­sen­tial for a sta­ble grid.

Mr Evans said the in­tro­duc­tion of low- cost coal gen­er­a­tion would place down­ward pres­sure on elec­tric­ity prices.

“Queens­land is lucky to have a more mod­ern coal fleet than other states but that should not rule out the con­struc­tion of a new HELE coal plant,” he said.

“The re­al­ity is as that old coal gen­er­a­tors re­tire, we need to re­place that baseload with

8GW worth of coal plants across Aus­tralia to shut down by 2030

Ul­tra su­per- crit­i­cal black coal is the cheap­est op­tion at $ 40-$ 78 per MWh Ul­tra su­per- crit­i­cal black coal with car­bon cap­ture syn­chro­nous sup­ply and with gas prices likely to re­main high, only coal will be a low cost op­tion.

“Aus­tralia has abun­dant sup­plies of high qual­ity coal.

“And be­cause coal- fired elec­tric­ity gen­er­a­tion is a re­li­able, 24- 7 source of power, there is no need for ex­pen­sive back- up power sources.”

Bur­dekin MP Dale Last said a new coal- fired plant would de­liver cheaper and more re­li­able power if it was built in North Queens­land.

“Our res­i­dents, man­u­fac­tur­ers and busi­nesses are crying out for cheaper power,” he said. “It is the sin­gle big­gest is­sue in terms of costs.”

The Op­po­si­tion last month an­nounced that, if elected, it would grant “pri­or­ity project” sta­tus to a low- emis­sion coal­fired power plant in the North.

“We are al­ready field­ing in­ter­est from both within Aus- and stor­age is costed at $ 69-$ 165 per MWh

Vari­able re­new­able en­ergy can’t de­liver sys­tem strength es­sen­tial for a sta­ble grid tralia and in­ter­na­tion­ally to con­struct a coal- fired power sta­tion,” Mr Last said.

“I favour the site at Collinsville, it ticks all the boxes.

“We have a site there, it’s right be­side the high- pow­ered transmission lines and right be­side a coal mine.

“We have a com­mu­nity that are more than will­ing to have that built there.”

Townsville En­ter­prise pol­icy and in­vest­ment direc­tor Michael McMil­lan said the State Gov­ern­ment could still meet its 50 per cent re­new­ables tar­get with a coal plant.

“What we need is largescale baseload and re­new­ables can con­trib­ute to that but the only baseload at the mo­ment is large- scale hy­dro,” he said.

“It’s not just about com­pet­i­tive pric­ing, we need low pric­ing. The only way we’re go­ing to get that as tech­nol­ogy stands is to look at clean coal

If all ex­ist­ing coal plants in Aus­tralia up­graded, it would re­duce emis­sions by 45 mil­lion tonnes a year

HELE tech­nol­ogy pop­u­lar in Ja­pan and Ger­many and large- scale baseload re­new­ables.”

En­ergy, Bio­fu­els and Wa­ter Sup­ply Min­is­ter Mark Bai­ley said MCA’s “bi­ased re­port” was based on self in­ter­est.

“The se­lec­tive data in the re­port un­der­es­ti­mates the cost of new coal gen­er­a­tion and over- es­ti­mates the cur­rent cost of re­new­ables, with so­lar and wind be­ing de­liv­ered at much lower prices to­day,” he said.

“By way of con­trast, in­de­pen­dent Chief Sci­en­tist and head of the Na­tional Elec­tric­ity Mar­ket Re­view Dr Alan Finkel told Se­nate Es­ti­mates re­cently that it is now a lot more ex­pen­sive to build new coal- fired power sta­tions than re­new­able en­ergy in­fras­truc­ture.

“Any sug­ges­tion that Queens­land lacks or will lack sys­tem strength, in­er­tia or volt­age con­trol is ig­no­rant non­sense.” THE Bruce High­way was blocked as emer­gency ser­vices re­sponded to two crashes south of Townsville yes­ter­day.

Traf­fic was brought to a stand­still for more than an hour on the Bur­dekin Bridge af­ter a mo­tor­cy­cle and car col­lided about 4pm. A man, 50, be­lieved to have been the mo­tor­cy­cle rider, was taken to Ayr Hospi­tal with com­pound frac­tures to his leg and arm.

Emer­gency crews were also called to a crash at Inker­man where a minibus and car col­lided about 6pm.

There were no se­ri­ous in­juries.

The Shang­hai Waigao­qiao No. 3 ul­tra su­per- crit­i­cal coal­fired power sta­tion in China.

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