"Fossil fuel companies in Australia could ship their carbon dioxide (CO₂) waste
overseas for disposal, under changes to the Environment Protection (Sea
Dumping) Act 1981 introduced to parliament late last week.
During her second reading speech, Environment Minister Tanya Plibersek said:
Companies would be able to better plan for transboundary projects for carbon
capture and storage into sub-seabed geological formations within a clear
regulatory framework. Until then, this export activity is not permitted
under the sea dumping act.
The Environment Protection (Sea Dumping) Amendment (Using New Technologies to
Fight Climate Change) Bill 2023 will allow export of CO₂ for the purpose of
“sequestration”, or storage under the sea. Companies, or research
organisations, would need to first apply for an export permit.
The main difficulty with this plan is that offshore carbon capture and storage
has not worked effectively in Australian waters.
If a permit is given for CO₂ waste to be exported to poorer countries, it’s
unclear how these countries will acquire the capacity and knowledge to achieve
successful carbon storage when wealthy fossil fuel companies operating in
Australia could not."
*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics