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18 June 2010

Climate Committee urges government to extend CCS to cover gas plants

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Experts warn emission targets will not be met without carbon capture systems for gas plants

The independent climate change committee has called on the government to extend plans to fit carbon capture and storage technology to coal-fired power stations to cover gas-fired power stations.

In a letter this week to Energy and Climate Change Secretary Chris Huhne, the committee warned that the UK would not be able to meet its long term target of cutting greenhouse gas emissions o80 per cent by 2050 unless it acts urgently to tackle emissions from gas-fired power plants.

It said that the government should modify its plans to fund four carbon capture and storage (CCS) plants to ensure at least one demonstration plant captures emissions from a gas plant.

It added that such a move would allow the UK to establish a world leading position with the new technology at a time when many countries are expected to undertake a "dash for gas" in order to curb their carbon emissions.

It also that the government's proposed emissions performance standard for new power plants should be set at a level low enough to ensure developers are required to fit CCS systems to gas-fired plants.

The letter comes just days ahead of the second major report from the committee on the UK's progress towards its emissions targets, which is expected before the end of the month.

The move was welcomed by the Carbon Capture and Storage Association (CCSA), although it argued that any gas CCS demonstration should be funded in addition to the current plans to support four coal-fired demonstration plants.


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