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Coal could get clean-energy subsidy under new Turnbull focus

Mark Kenny reports in the Brisbane Times (1.2.17) on indications that the Turnbull government may offer subsidies to energy companies to construct ‘clean’ coal-fired power stations.

‘Malcolm Turnbull has opened the possibility of using clean-energy subsidies to build new-generation, coal-fired power stations as he branded Labor’s heavy focus on renewables “mindless”, and a recipe for more expensive, less reliable electricity.

‘Flagging a policy switch sure to provoke anger from anti-coal environmentalists, but set to please fossil-fuel enthusiasts in the Coalition partyroom, Mr Turnbull said technological advances had made new coal-fired generators viable as a potential foundation in the overall energy mix.

‘”The next incarnation of our national energy policy should be technology agnostic – it’s security and cost that matter most, not how you deliver it,” he told the National Press Club in Canberra.

‘This called for a policy approach that was non-ideological, using “all of the above technologies” – coal, wind, solar, pumped hydro, and improved battery storage.’

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