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Ferguson on coal matches Wong in Copenhagen

Australian Greens Deputy Leader, Senator Christine Milne, said of Minister Ferguson's announcement of 4 new carbon capture and storage pre-feasibility studies:

"How timely that, while Minister Wong is in Copenhagen promoting global action far too weak to address the climate crisis, Minister Ferguson is at home in Australia promoting local action which also has no hope of protecting the climate.

"Even Ian Macfarlane no longer believes the hype that we can clean up coal. In an age when we have to move swiftly to zero emissions alternatives like baseload solar, ocean and geothermal power, coal with carbon capture and storage will always be too polluting, since no-one claims it can get below 10% of standard coal emissions.

"The Rudd Government's coal obsession is holding back the creation of green jobs at home, and it is holding back progress globally since Minister Wong is refusing to commit to serious emissions cuts at home until the 2030s, when she thinks clean coal will suddenly become available.

"Developing countries are demanding that rich nations take on cuts in the order of 40% below 1990 by 2020, and that they achieve these cuts in their own domestic economies, instead of by offsetting. Australia would have to replace a significant amount of our coal power with renewables if we were to achieve that goal.

"Meanwhile, we have $120 million of taxpayers' dollars being allocated to even more 'pre-feasibility' studies for carbon capture and storage. Some of these projects have been at pre-feasibility for years already."

"Australia is rapidly going back to the global reputation it had in the Howard years. Martin Ferguson is showing why Australia deserve the fossil of day award earlier this week in Copenhagen."

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