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Coal and Carbon Capture Storage

Volume 494: debated on Wednesday 17 June 2009

I am today publishing a consultation on coal and carbon capture and storage entitled “A Framework for the Development of Clean Coal”.

In April, the Budget announced financing for up to four CCS demonstration projects in the UK and, the following day, I outlined proposals for a new regulatory regime for new coal-fired power stations. Following the statutory strategic environmental assessment, this consultation document sets out the Government’s proposals in more detail.

The aims of our proposals are to drive the decarbonisation of our energy supply, to safeguard our energy security and to get the best deal for consumers and businesses. The conditions on new coal proposed in this document are the most environmentally ambitious of any country in the world, requiring the demonstration of CCS on a substantial proportion of any new power station and the 100 per cent. retrofit of CCS when it is proven.

The document also sets out for consultation the process for funding and taking forward the demonstration projects that will enable us to maintain coal as part of our energy mix, supporting diversity and therefore security of supply.

By acting early, jobs will also be created as Britain develops the expertise in what could be a major new industry, with CCS projects offering the potential to form the hubs for clusters of low carbon industries.

By driving the development of CCS in this country, we are also, as a country, playing an essential role in tackling climate change. Coal is already widely used in developed and developing countries and its use is expected to grow further: 70 to 80 per cent. of the predicted growth in emissions in the coming decades will come from developing countries unless we find a route to low carbon growth

Copies of the consultation have been placed in the Library and it is available from: