Australia remains a leading global energy generator and retains its status as a reliable supplier of energy to trading partners, according to a new report released by Geoscience Australia.
GA has released its latest assessment of Australia’s Energy Commodity Resources. Minister for resources and northern Australia Madeleine King said the report provided insights into how Australia will be able to progress on the journey to making net-zero emissions a reality.
“Australia continues to have strong gas reserves, which will help smooth the transition to a low-emissions economy by acting as a firming fuel for renewables,” King said.
“Our unique geology is also being used to tap into emerging opportunities and help decarbonise our economy.”
One of the trends observed in the report is the increase in hydrogen projects that King said showed great promise.
“We saw a 43% increase in total hydrogen projects in Australia in 2021, with the number of operational projects rising from 3 to 20. While many of these projects are small in scale, their potential is enormous,” she said.
“Australia also continues to invest in carbon capture and storage initiatives to reduce the amount of carbon dioxide released to the atmosphere. The International Energy Agency has identified CCS as essential to the world reaching net zero emissions.
“This is in addition to the central role Australia will play in critical minerals and rare earths development for energy storage and electrification.”
Geoscience Australia’s report, which is its second assessment of the country’s energy commodity resources, acknowledges the impact of COVID-19 on the energy market.
“The COVID-19 pandemic had a dramatic impact on global energy markets during 2020, with major declines in demand for oil, natural gas, coal and uranium as COVID-19 related lockdowns changed the levels of energy consumption,” the report says.
“Production of Australia’s energy commodities in 2020 reflects these global declines in energy demand, with a 2.4% (563 petajoules [PJ]) fall in total annual production from 23,739 PJ in 2019 to 23,176 PJ in 2020.”