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Australia's Victoria Government has unveiled a new policy concerning future uses of brown coal, which it intends to use to drive investment, create jobs and balance environmental needs in forthcoming mining projects. 

The policy seeks to set the terms of use of the state’s brown coal reserves and achieving low-emissions. It lends support to projects that provide employment to highly skilled workers and bolster investment in the Latrobe Valley and Gippsland. 

Government of Victoria Minister for Resources Wade Noonan said: “This policy supports brown coal projects that create highly skilled jobs and boost investment.

“Any new proposals for alternative uses of coal will be carefully examined to ensure they support local communities, the environment, and the economy.

“We want to create new jobs with a forward-thinking approach to climate change and a commitment to net-zero emissions by 2050.”

"We want to create new jobs with a forward-thinking approach to climate change and a commitment to net-zero emissions by 2050."

The new policy framework places stringent requirements on private sector proposals for new uses of coal, with future projects needing to comply with the state's commitment to net-zero emissions in accordance with the Climate Change Act 2017.

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The government stated that it will consider the projects on a case-by-case basis, after evaluating economic, social and environmental factors.

It further noted that coal projects looking for support need to showcase an interim emissions standard equal to that of existing efficient gas-fired power stations.

The emissions standard will affect projects using more than 27,000t of coal per annum.

Image: The policy outlines future uses of the state’s brown coal reserves in a low-emissions setting. Photo: courtesy of John Nyberg/