Coal to help make Qld an energy superpower: QRC

QUEENSLAND can become a global energy superpower thanks to abundant coal and gas reserves and easy access to renewables as well the arrival of technology such as carbon capture and storage.

 QRC CEO Ian Macfarlane.

QRC CEO Ian Macfarlane.

Queensland Resources Council CEO Ian Macfarlane said Queensland was on the verge of a historic era for resources.

He said the CCS-Pyrolysis process on coal and gas would position Queensland as a significant, reliable source of clean energy to meet growing world energy needs.

Macfarlane said the state government's agreement to work with the QRC to deliver a Queensland Resources Development Plan would help Queensland work and earn its way out of COVID, supercharging Queensland's economic recovery and delivering decades of responsible prosperity.

"A coordinated response is an opportunity to put Queensland - and hundreds of thousands of Queensland jobs - at the international forefront of areas such as advanced manufacturing, renewable energy and battery storage deployment and hydrogen industry development," he said.

Macfarlane said there were strong parallels between the plan and the historic 1968 Central Queensland Coal Associates Agreement, which put Queensland's coalfields on the global resources map half a century ago. 

"Just as that historic agreement established a new foundation for growth in investment, jobs, production and exports in Queensland's coal industry at the time, a well-implemented Resources Industry Development Plan will take our industry to a whole new level," he said.

"In the meantime, the resources sector remains committed to ensuring our sector operates responsibly, respectfully and safely and we will never lose sight of the fact there are families and a global community of people relying on us to do just that."

Macfarlane said the industry's latest economic contribution data showed resources added a record $82.6 billion to the Queensland economy over the past financial year, equating to a $10 million contribution from resources every hour of every day.

"Resources contributes one in every five dollars to the Queensland economy and one in six jobs, which is why our sector's performance is so crucial to a strong COVID recovery," he said.

Macfarlane said the number of jobs supported by resources rose 13% in 2019-20 to more than 420,000.

Of those, almost 53,000 people are direct employees and more than 367,000 jobs are supported by the sector.

The number of Queensland businesses directly supported by resources rose 5% to 15,200, with companies reporting a 19% increase in spending to reach $27 billion.

Macfarlane said resource companies exported $56.5 billion worth of goods last year, which represented 80% of Queensland's total exports.

"This export result has been achieved at a time of global market upheaval and volatile commodity prices, which makes it an even more extraordinary outcome," he said.


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