Clean Coal Technologies

Accelerating Commercial and Policy Drivers for Deployment

About this report

Coal is and will remain the world’s most abundant and widely distributed fossil fuel. Burning coal, however, can pollute and it produces carbon dioxide. Clean coal technologies address this problem. The widespread deployment of pollution-control equipment to reduce sulphur dioxide, NOx and dust emissions from industry is just one example which has brought cleaner air to many countries. Since the 1970s, various policy and regulatory measures have created a growing commercial market for these clean coal technologies, with the result that costs have fallen and performance has improved. More recently, the need to tackle rising CO2 emissions to address climate change means that clean coal technologies now extend to include those for CO2 capture and storage (CCS). This short report from the IEA Coal Industry Advisory Board (CIAB) presents industry’s considered recommendations on how to accelerate the development and deployment of this important group of new technologies and to grasp their very significant potential to reduce emissions from coal use. It identifies an urgent need to make progress with demonstration projects and prove the potential of CCS through government-industry partnerships. Its commercialisation depends upon a clear legal and regulatory framework,public acceptance and market-based financial incentives. For the latter, the CIAB favours cap-and-trade systems, price supports and mandatory feed-in tariffs, as well as inclusion of CCS in the Kyoto Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism to create demand in developing economies where coal use is growing most rapidly.