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Global CCS Institute

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The logo of the Global CCS Institute.

The Global CCS Institute is an independent nonprofit organisation with the aim of accelerating global deployment of carbon capture and storage (CCS) projects, especially commercial scale CCS.

The institute was established by the Australian government and is based in Canberra, but is global in its focus, and has offices in Europe, North America[1] and Japan.[2]

Its emphasis is on collaboration and knowledge sharing to facilitate development and implementation of CCS.

The philosophy is one of "fact-based advocacy". Regardless of your position on CCS (whether you believe it's part of the solution or are an anti-coal activist) the Global CCS Institute website is a useful good source of information.

Funding was cut following the 2010-11 floods in Queensland, which caused billions of dollars damage. This was part of a broad range of budget cuts. By this stagea carbon price was in the works, in the form of a carbon tax[3] and this has become the government's central policy in tackling climate change. However the government has expressed commitment to continue supporting the institute.

Critics

Opposition leader Tony Abbott, who has expressed scepticism about climate change, during the 2010 election promised to axe the Global Carbon Capture and Storage Institute, as part of slashing funding to a range of climate change mitigation programs. Rather than divert the money to other climate initiatives, the promises involved removing billions of dollars from climate climate-change programs.[4]

The Australian Greens have argued for funding to go to equivalent programs in renewable energy rather than funding CCS, including the Global CCS Institute. The institute's response, along with others in the sector, is that coal will remain an important source of energy for decades to come, on the basis of existing capacity and new plants being built, particularly in China. Developing cost-effective CCS is argued to be the only practical way to mitigate the carbon emissions of these plants.

  1. Global Carbon Capture and Storage Institute, description on the website of the Australian government's Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism
  2. Global CCS Institute opens office in Japan - Global CCS Institute news, 28 Sep 2011.
  3. Gillard confirms one-off flood levy, Sydney Morning Herald, January 27, 2011.
  4. Coalition growing cooler towards climate policy, Adam Morton, (Opinion), Sydney Morning Herald, July 21, 2010.