Wednesday, 16 March 2016
That the Senate—
(a) notes that:
(i) clean energy is the key to Australia's future prosperity and supports the jobs, investment and technological innovation that is created in Australia through clean energy technologies,
(ii) Australia was on track to achieve around 28 per cent of its electricity sourced from clean energy in the year 2020 until the Government and Opposition voted together to lower the target to 23 per cent in June 2015, and
(iii) as a result of Australia being the first country in the world to have reduced its legislated renewable energy aspirations, no wave of new jobs and construction have commenced 9 months after the passage of the Renewable Energy (Electricity) Amendment Act 2015 (the Act), despite significant global capital seeking to invest in the energy systems of the future; and
(b) urges energy retailers, Origin Energy and Energy Australia to make their intentions clear whether they will facilitate the imminent construction of new Australian clean energy projects or whether they will pass the penalty price for non-compliance with the Act onto their Australian customers.
On behalf of the government: since 2011-12 there has been significant growth in many areas of industry to 2014-15. Large-scale solar PV jobs are up 1,560 per cent, from 50 to 830 jobs; wind jobs are up 11 per cent, from 1,110 to 1,230; hydro jobs are up 23 per cent, from 1,480 to 1,820; and biomass jobs are up seven per cent from 1,380 to 1,470. Australia's renewable target will see 23.5 per cent of electricity coming from renewable sources by 2020. That is a doubling of large-scale renewable energy supported by the RET over the next five years. We fixed the RET target last year, and investments in projects to create almost 400 megawatts of capacity have been announced and significant further announcements are expected in the coming six months.