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Fed Govt uncertainty over climate-change policy blocking investment in new power gen; combined-cycle gas turbines cheaper than coal for NSW, Owen inquiry finds

Posted by gmarkets on 12 October, 2007

The Owen Inquiry was a blunt rebuke for the Federal Government’s 10-year delay in agreeing to a national emissions trading scheme, wrote Marian Wilkinson in The Sydney Morning Herald (12/9/2007, p.4).

Gas the better option: Just this year the Prime Minister finally bowed to business pressure and agreed to the scheme, which was designed to put a price on carbon pollution from gas emissions. But Howard said the national scheme would not be introduced until 2012. On the central question of the inquiry, which was how NSW would meet its power needs in the future, the Owen report found that a carbon price set by a national emissions trading scheme could, for the first time, make gas baseload power cheaper than coal-fired power. A high enough price on carbon, the report found, could “ultimately make new combined-cycle gas turbines more cost effective to build than coal-fired power generators”.

The Sydney Morning Herald, 12/9/2007, p. 4

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