Coal research

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ACARP: the Australian black coal industry’s research program

Established in 1992, ACARP is a 100 per cent owned, funded and managed industry research program. It is well regarded nationally and internationally as a facilitator of R&D for the Australian black coal industry.

ACARP has a history of delivering significant safety, environmental and economic benefits to the coal industry. It continues to play a significant role in maintaining the industry as one of the safest in the world and helps maintain Australia’s competitive position as a world-leading exporter of high quality coals.

ACARP is the only national research program in the world that is funded and managed completely by the coal industry. It invests approximately $20 million per year in research projects of relevance to all areas of coal production and of importance to the Australian black coal industry. ACARP’s focus is on developing and delivering research that produces tangible benefits in knowledge, technology or services.

ACARP funds projects in the areas of:

  • Occupational health and safety
  • Environment and rehabilitation of mined land including various social ‘licence to operate’ areas
  • Community concerns and land access
  • Cost of production
  • Productivity of underground and open cut mining and coal processing efficiency
  • Technical market support (e.g. coal quality impacts on modern power plants; understanding coal to coke conversion and coke performance; and responding to regulations impacting traded coal quality, transport and utilisation)
  • Mine site greenhouse gas mitigation.

The research is carried out by well-respected, independent Australian research organisations including CSIRO, major universities, consultants and service providers.

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Australian Carbon Innovation

ACI is a not-for-profit company with a mandate to co-invest with stakeholders in carbon innovation (including CO₂ recycle), hydrogen utilisation and emissions reduction technologies.

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Australian National Low Emissions Coal Research & Development

ANLEC R&D conducts research that underpins the development and deployment of low emission coal technologies (LECT). In particular, it aims to provide independent and objective analysis, data and expertise to facilitate the design, permitting and operation of LECT plants using Australian coal under Australian conditions.

ANLEC R&D is co-funded by both the Australian Government and the Australian coal industry, which are each contributing $75 million towards this partnership.

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CO2CRC is Australia's leading carbon capture and storage research organisation. It has safely injected, monitored and contained 95,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide over more than a decade.

CO2CRC designs, project manages and funds CCS programs utilising the best international and local talent. Its partners include many of the world’s leading CCS research teams.

CO2CRC demonstrates carbon capture and storage in-field at its $100m Otway International Test Centre. The Centre is one of the best geologically characterised CCS sites in the world.

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The Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation has a long history of undertaking research relevant to the safety, environmental performance and productivity of the Australian coal mining industry. This includes work on:

  • Mining safety and automation
  • Coal processing
  • Surface and subsurface monitoring of open cut and underground mines
  • Geological modelling for exploration, design and operation of mines
  • Monitoring and geomechanics modelling for improving the reliability of interpretation for mine operations
  • Strategic research in coal burst prediction, monitoring and prevention technologies
  • Surface and underground coal mine fugitive emissions (including measurement and estimation methods, mitigation and utilisation).

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Other low emissions technology activities

Electric Power Research Institute (US)

International Energy Agency

IEA Greenhouse Gas R&D Programme

International Centre for Sustainable Carbon

Peter Cook Centre for Carbon Capture and Storage Research, University of Melbourne (Australia)

Research Institute of Innovative Technology for the Earth (Japan)

Stanford Center for Carbon Storage (US)

US Department of Energy

Center for Carbon Capture and Conversion at the University of Wyoming