£535m for Australian green-energy fund; £353m for Chinese air pollution

23 March 2016
By Jack Loughran
Mobile version
Share |
China's extreme air pollution problems is estimated to kill 1.4 million people a year

China's extreme air pollution problems is estimated to kill 1.4 million people a year

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has said the country will create a A$1bn (£535m) green-energy innovation fund, while the World Bank has approved a $500m (£353m) loan to China to clean up its air pollution.

Turnbull’s announcement represents a major departure from his predecessor's much maligned approach to combating climate change.

Former Prime Minister Tony Abbott was criticised by environmental groups for lagging behind other advanced economies when he announced cuts to Australia's greenhouse gas emissions last year.

Abbott was ousted in a party coup by Turnbull in September and faced criticism for his strong support for the coal industry and for scrapping an ambitious carbon tax and emissions trading plan in 2014.

The new fund will focus on investing in high-tech clean energy technologies which will help with Abbott’s pledge to cut emissions by 26-28 per cent of 2005 levels by 2030, a target he submitted as part of negotiations on a global climate deal in Paris last year.

"What that is going to do is every year invest A$100m in the smartest, most cutting-edge Australian clean-energy technologies and businesses to ensure that we play our part in cracking the very hard problems, the challenging technical difficulties that we face in terms of reducing emissions," he said.

The new fund should help Australia to reduce its carbon emissions, as it is currently one of the largest emitters on a per capita basis due to its reliance on coal-fired power plants.

Critics have accused the country of doing little to match ambitious targets set by the United States and Europe.

"This will be investing in storage, in new battery technology, in smart grids, in some of the exciting solar visions that people have hoped for and imagined for Australia, but which are only now really becoming reality," said Australia’s environment minister Greg Hunt.

Meanwhile, the World Bank has approved a $500m loan to China to support companies in Beijing, Hebei, Tianjin and neighbouring areas that are taking action to tackle air pollution under a prevention and control plan adopted by China's cabinet.

The money is part of a broader programme expected to reach $1.4bn for "green financing" over the next six years that includes another half billion dollars from Hua Xia Bank and $400m in equity contributions from sub-borrowers, the World Bank said.

Hua Xia Bank said it will establish a Green Finance Centre and pilot innovative financing models and products.

China suffers from severe air pollution and is the world's largest emitter of greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide.

At the end of last year, Beijing issued two red alerts for smog to prepare its citizens for days of extreme pollution.

Some 70 percent of the country’s electricity comes from coal-fired power plants, although it aims to reduce its reliance on fossil fuels by increasing the share of nuclear, hydro, wind and solar power, with the goal of cutting emissions of major pollutants in the power sector.

Latest Issue

E&T cover image 1607

"As the dust settles after the referendum result, we consider what happens next. We also look forward to an international summer of sport."

E&T jobs

  • Control System Engineer

    United Utilities
    • Lancaster, Lancashire
    • Up to £33415 + Comprehensive Benefits

    Provide ICA maintenance and engineering support to the Water & Wastewater Production

    • Recruiter: United Utilities

    Apply for this job

  • Signal Processing Engineer

    B&W Group
    • Steyning, West Sussex
    • Competitive Salary

    We are looking for a Signal Processing Engineer to support the R&D process on active loudspeaker products.

    • Recruiter: B&W Group

    Apply for this job

  • Principal Mechanical & Electrical Engineer

    De Montfort University
    • Leicestershire
    • Grade G: £36,672 - £46,414 per annum

    Join the Projects Team to develop and manage medium to large projects on the university estate.

    • Recruiter: De Montfort University

    Apply for this job

  • Advanced Commissioning Engineer

    National Grid
    • Nottinghamshire, Nottingham, England
    • £46000 - £57000 per year

    National Grid is at the heart of energy in the UK. The electricity we provide gets the nation to work, powers schools and lights everyone's way home. Our energy network connects the nation, so it's essential that it's continually evolving, advancing and i

    • Recruiter: National Grid

    Apply for this job

  • Electrical Design Engineer

    Oxford Instruments
    • Yatton, Bristol
    • Competitive salary plus excellent benefits

    We are looking for an electrical designer to join our engineering design team.

    • Recruiter: Oxford Instruments

    Apply for this job

  • Skilled Electrical Fitter

    MBDA
    • Bolton
    • Competitive Salary & Benefits

    What?s the opportunity?   The Electrical Fitter will carry out manufacturing and test tasks within the electrical department in accordance with product certification procedures, defined workmanship  ...

    • Recruiter: MBDA

    Apply for this job

  • Electrical Manufacturing Technician

    MBDA
    • Stevenage
    • Competitive Salary & Benefits

    What?s the opportunity?   As a qualified craftsman with experience in electrical manufacturing, the Manufacturing Technician will report to a Team Leader, receiving day to day ...

    • Recruiter: MBDA

    Apply for this job

  • Consultant Engineer (Electrical Power)

    BAE Systems
    • Cumbria, Barrow-In-Furness, England
    • Negotiable

    Consultant Engineer (Electrical Power) Would you like to play a key role in providing technical direction to the design of power systems on the Successor class submarines, which will replace the current Trident-equipped Vanguard class, currently in servic

    • Recruiter: BAE Systems

    Apply for this job

  • Supply Restoration Team Manager (HV/SAP)

    SSE
    • Oxford, Oxfordshire
    • Salary: £37,588 to £49,645 + Car (SSE8) Depending on skills and experience

    SSE is looking to recruit a Supply Restoration Team Manager to join our existing team in Oxford.

    • Recruiter: SSE

    Apply for this job

  • Electrical Technical Lead - Global Operations, Engineering & Laboratory

    Pfizer Ltd
    • Kent

    An exciting opportunity has arisen to join a dynamic team of professional engineers, supporting the development of novel drugs.

    • Recruiter: Pfizer Ltd

    Apply for this job

More jobs ▶

Subscribe

Choose the way you would like to access the latest news and developments in your field.

Subscribe to E&T