08 Dec 2021

Report reaffirms place for gas in lower emissions future

A new report from Frontier Economics commissioned by the Australian Gas Industry Trust (AGIT) confirms that natural gas has an important part to play in a cleaner energy economy as we move towards a net-zero future.  

The study’s findings reinforce the value of flexible and dispatchable gas-powered generation in the electricity system as the energy mix continues to shift further towards renewables (and further away from coal). 

Unforeseen events, such as the recent closure of Hazelwood Power Station in Victoria — in addition to various power outage events — result in the need for greater gas-powered generation to meet the demand, and this is a trend that is set to continue in the National Electricity Market (NEM) even as the electricity mix changes. 

Gas-powered generation offers a flexible, on-demand response to meet necessary demand during periods of fluctuation, which makes it a perfect partner for renewable energies such as wind and solar. 

As Australia — and other countries for that matter — continue to move away from coal-fired power and install more renewables to meet Paris Agreement targets, natural gas, which emits around half the emissions of coal, will provide on-tap energy to ensure the continued stability of our electricity grid. 

As report author and Frontier Economics director Andrew Harpham said, ‘’On all the measures we consider, gas is maintaining its role as a bulk energy provider to help meet the ongoing demand for energy. 

“Gas also offers a flexible solution when there are unanticipated events and problems with supply from renewable energy sources.’’ 

You can read the full report, The role of gas in the transition to net-zero power generationhere.