The great carbon capture and storage debate: can Santos make it work?

When Sylvia Little fried her eggs at her Adelaide home one November morning in 1969, she became Santos’s first customer for natural gas from Moomba, 800 kilometres north in the Strzelecki Desert. Today, in subterranean reservoirs depleted by millions like Mrs Little since, the company plans to bury millions of tonnes of carbon dioxide. It … Continue reading The great carbon capture and storage debate: can Santos make it work?

The drive to put hydrogen on South Australian roads

The potential for hydrogen to become an industrial-scale fuel is being touted as an essential state election issue for South Australia. Business SA CEO Martin Haese says the time has come to be decisive in establishing clean, green, circular economies. And hydrogen, he says, is bursting with potential. The advocacy group’s Pre-Election Charter22 report details … Continue reading The drive to put hydrogen on South Australian roads

How to make electrolysers and other hydrogen equipment in Australia

On Sunday, the Queensland government announced plans to build one of the world’s largest renewable energy manufacturing facilities in the world, at Gladstone in the state’s north. Backed by Fortescue Future Industries (FFI), which is chaired by mining magnate Andrew Forrest, the facility will be making equipment to create green hydrogen, which can be used … Continue reading How to make electrolysers and other hydrogen equipment in Australia

Has our hydrogen future arrived?

Hydrogen has been discussed as the fuel of the future in recent times, with state and federal governments aiming to see renewable hydrogen at a competitive price by 2030. But some companies – most notably Fortescue Future Industries (FFI), an offshoot of mining giant Fortescue Metals Group – have more ambitious dates in mind. FFI … Continue reading Has our hydrogen future arrived?

The incoming hydrogen boom

This week, New South Wales and Queensland have announced massive hydrogen fuel strategies, adding to the raft of policies, projects and agreements circling Australia. What are the highlights of each strategy, and how do they compare? And where are the other states headed on hydrogen fuel? New South Wales New South Wales unveiled a hydrogen … Continue reading The incoming hydrogen boom

Future power strategy: electrify everything

When Hurricane Ida slammed into the lowest-lying areas of Louisiana in August of 2021, many expected that the most powerful storm to strike the area in more than a century would produce an ugly rerun of the storm that struck exactly 16 years earlier: Hurricane Katrina. In 2005, neglected levees, overwhelmed by a massive storm … Continue reading Future power strategy: electrify everything

Nuclear power in Australia: is it a good idea?

Two weeks ago, Australia and the US announced a deal for the funding of a fleet of new nuclear-powered attack submarines for patrolling the Indo-Pacific, all part of the new AUKUS defence pact that has caused diplomatic havoc in Europe and beyond. The announcement reignited the age-old debate between the pro- and anti-nuclear energy lobbies … Continue reading Nuclear power in Australia: is it a good idea?

Beware the lure of unethical solar power

Solar energy may be the future. But only if it lets go of the past. International NGO the World Economic Forum has issued a damning report card on the state of the world’s solar panel manufacturing. It may be experiencing rapid growth. It may be one of the cheapest sources of power. But its climate credentials … Continue reading Beware the lure of unethical solar power

The nuclear debate

The nuclear debate has flashed back onto Australia’s radar. The decision to buy eight nuclear-powered attack submarines has sparked the obvious question: if subs are okay, what about nuclear powerplants? The “no” case was quick off the mark. In an essay published in The Conversation on 20 September, Griffith University Emeritus Professor Ian Lowe made … Continue reading The nuclear debate

Out of thin air: direct carbon capture is on the horizon

An Australian company could be selling modules that suck carbon dioxide directly from the air as early as next year, but it will be up to the highest bidder to decide what happens to that CO2 once it’s been captured. Melbourne-based Southern Green Gas (SGG) has just announced a partnership with Swiss Re, a multinational … Continue reading Out of thin air: direct carbon capture is on the horizon

Electrici-wee? Getting energy from wastewater

Could we ever use urine to power batteries? An international team of chemists have come a step closer with a new catalyst for urea reactions. “Urea is globally abundant in wastewater and can be used to power fuel cells as an alternative to conventional technology, which uses clean water in an electrolyser,” explains Yao Zheng, … Continue reading Electrici-wee? Getting energy from wastewater

Seven pieces of scientific information on the Vickery coal mine expansion

The Vickery coal mine extension in New South Wales has received approval from the Environment Minister, Sussan Ley. In light of the recent decision, here are some relevant recent articles on the science and practicality of coal mining, climate change and renewable energy. Australia’s fossil fuels are unextractable if we’re to hit Paris 1.5 C … Continue reading Seven pieces of scientific information on the Vickery coal mine expansion