Santos has called for a greater role for natural gas in meeting Australia’s future need for reliable, affordable energy while reducing carbon emissions from power generation.
In a submission to the Australian Government’s Energy White Paper, Santos said that Australia’s abundant natural gas resources combined with proven and clean gas-fired power generation technology placed Australia in an enviable position to maintain long-term energy security.
The submission states “The low carbon and water intensity and proven reliability of gas-fired power generation has the potential to underwrite a broader portfolio of low to zero emission energy platforms.”?
The submission argues that natural gas can:
- Offer an immediate way to transform baseload power generation away from high-carbon coal to low-carbon gas, “˜buying-time’ for the development of zero emission technologies;
- Act as a partner and accelerate the integration of intermittent renewable power generation into Australia’s energy grid;
- Supply growing Asia-Pacific LNG demand, particularly to China and India, aiding those countries to displace higher-emission fuels; and,
- Underwrite significant economic activity, generating new jobs, investment in regional Australia, additional export revenue and government taxes and royalties.
The company also said that key virtues underwriting the compelling potential of Australian natural gas in this regard included the nation’s abundant resource base – equivalent to several hundred years of current use – which is positioned close to domestic and foreign demand points, and linked by an extensive and growing pipeline network.
Santos chief executive officer David Knox said “Santos supports passage of the Government’s Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme legislation, with one proviso: that the ability for natural gas to compete on a level playing field, whether in the domestic or export market, is preserved.”?
Santos’ submission states that “unless a clear price of carbon is established upon a sufficiently level playing field, enabling assessments of the demand for gas, the pace of economic transition and overall investment certainty, then the full potential for natural gas will be at best delayed, at worst lost.”?
The submission can be accessed on Santos’ website.