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Australian Electricity Emissions Intensity Drops Since Carbon Price

The Australian Minister for Climate Change has reported that the intensity of the country’s electricity generation emissions has fallen since the introduction of the carbon price in July.

Greg Combet, the Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency, revealed that “in the first three months of the carbon price, electricity generated for the National Electricity Market emitted 0.85 tonnes of carbon pollution for each megawatt hour — a 7.6 per cent decline in emissions intensity compared to 2011-12.”

The data come from the Australian Energy Market Operator, who provided the chart below, outlining the emissions intensity for fourteen months over the the time the carbon price was introduced by Labor Prime Minister Julia Gillard.

Australian Energy Emissions Drops Since Carbon Price

Emission intensity refers to the average emission rate of a given pollutant from a given source; in this case, carbon from electricity generation.

“This means the amount of carbon pollution released into the atmosphere in the September quarter this year was 2.4 million tonnes lower than it would have been if emissions intensity had remained at the 2011-12 level of 0.92 tonnes per megawatt hour,” Combett added in a press release published Thursday.

Unsurprisingly, given the high-minded attitude my country’s politicians take towards their work, Combet could not pass up the opportunity to take a swipe at the opposition leader, Liberal Tony Abbott, saying that his “claims that the carbon price would not reduce greenhouse gas emissions are just as misleading as his wild claims that the carbon price would lead to unimaginable price increases and wreck the Australian economy.”

Glad to see those in power taking the high road on this.

Source: Renew Economy
Image Source: Sydney Morning Herald

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