Ret review gives some certainty but is it enough?

[news_posted_on] 26 October 2012  | 
WWF-Australia today welcomed the recommendation of Australia’s Climate Change Authority that the current Renewable Energy Target should remain in place, but questioned why no increases are recommended beyond 2020.

The Authority today released the Renewable Energy Target Review Discussion Paper, which recommended that the existing target of 41 000 GWh should not be reduced.

WWF spokesperson Kellie Caught said global investments in 2011 in renewable energy climbed to USD$257 billion, a six-fold increase since 2004.

“The Authority’s preliminary view is a common sense move compared to the uncertainty that would be created for Australian businesses if the RET was reduced,” Ms Caught said.

“Globally, last year more money was invested in new renewable power than conventional high-pollution energy generation.”

“The world is moving towards a clean energy future, Australia just can’t afford to be left behind.”

However Ms Caught said it was disappointing that the Review did not recommend increasing the RET beyond 2020, instead putting the decision off until another review in 2016.

“Increasing the RET would provide the industry and investors longer-term certainty, and give emerging renewable industries incentive,” Ms Caught said.

Modelling results presented in WWFs recent report, Our Clean Energy Future, shows that under the current carbon price and no increase of the RET after 2020, most renewable energy industries will stall in 2020 and cease project development for between 4 and 32 years until cost convergence is achieved subject to carbon price.

“Clearly this would result in green collar job losses and an exodus of investment, but it also puts domestic emission cuts out of reach forcing Australian energy companies to go overseas for emission offsets for many years to come,” Ms Caught said

“Transitioning to 100% renewables is desirable, technically achievable, affordable, and popular amongst Australians.

“What we need now is for governments to bring the renewable economy into reality.”

WWF-Australia media contacts:

Daniel Rockett, Senior Media Officer, WWF-Australia, 0432 206 592
Kellie Caught, National Manager – Climate Change, 0406 383 277
Solar thermal collectors use much simpler technology and convert far more of the sun's energy into useful heat than PV.
Solar thermal collectors use much simpler technology and convert far more of the sun's energy into useful heat than PV.
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