THE CSIRO believes an "energy revolution" is coming - and Queensland should be at its centre.
Speaking after a G20 conference in Brisbane, CSIRO energy and resources executive director Dr Alex Wonhas said energy exports - through gas and coal - remained vital to Australia, but there was a consensus action had to be taken on climate change.
"But there certainly was strong consensus that we need to look at all available technology options and that, frankly, technology will play an absolutely vital role to solve some of the energy challenges that we are facing, both on the productivity side but, even more importantly, on the clean energy side," he said.
"Either to clean up existing ways of producing and consuming energy or, frankly, to leapfrog or and replace existing forms of energy. So, just watch this space.
"I think what's going to happen over the next 10 to 20 years in the energy sector will be possibly a revolution."
Dr Wonhas said energy remained vital to Queensland's economy due to the coal, and soon, gas industries.
"Energy matters to Australia because, just to give you one example, Australia earned $68 billion from the export of energy last year," he said.
"But, Australia also matters to the world of energy because Australia is currently the fourth largest exporter of LNG, but very soon to be the world's largest exporter of LNG. It's the third largest exporter of uranium and it's the second largest exporter of coal.
"So I would say we've got very strong agreement that the demand for energy is going to grow, and energy will play an absolutely vital role to underpin further economic growth and also, very importantly, to help lift maybe the two billion to three billion people out of poverty who currently do not have access to clean and reliable energy."
Despite Australia's reliance on fossil fuels, Dr Wonhas said clean energy exports would be vital to the global economy in coming years.
"There was also consensus, and you might be surprised to hear that, that the challenge of climate change, that obviously energy is very much exposed to, needs to be addressed," he said.
- APN NEWSDESK
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