Overcoming the fear of the unknown

Fear of the unknown holds politicians back from reducing the dominance of coal in our energy supply. Rapid replacement of coal with renewables may be the ideal, but it may be a leap too far.

Today we’re running articles from two contrasting perspectives on the role of gas in reducing Australia’s carbon emissions: Matthew Wright and Tony Wood. While the two of them are extremely different in approach and background, they both agree that conventional gas-fired power generation is too carbon intensive to meet our goal for a safe climate. We ultimately need sources of power that generate zero emissions or pretty close to it. That’s the view of just about any decent climate and energy modeller if you want a reasonable chance of containing global temperature rise below 3 degrees Celsius, let alone 2 degrees.

The argument is then really about how fast we can achieve this wholesale decarbonisation of electricity.

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