Australian Wind Alliance

PM's planned cuts to RET will hurt regional Australia, increase risk of power bill rises

Mr Abbott’s planned cuts to RET will hurt regional Australia, increase risk of power bill rises

Plans by the Prime Minister to abolish the Renewable Energy Target, reported in the Australian Financial Review today, are out of step with the public, would devastate clean energy investment in regional Australia and increase the risk of power price rises, Australian Wind Alliance said today.

“There is strong support for renewable energy throughout Australia but the government seems to be deaf to what Australians really want,” said National Coordinator, Australian Wind Alliance, Andrew Bray.

“Regional Australia will be the losers from any cuts to the target.

“Clean energy jobs in manufacturing and civil contracting will dry up and long-term income streams will be denied to farmers, councils and local communities.

“Mr Abbott has not been able to produce a coherent argument for why he would want to slash jobs and investments in regional Australia.

“The modelling is now clear that reducing the reducing the current 2020 target will not deliver any benefit at all to power bills.

“Any cuts to the target increase the risk that power bills will be driven higher by spiralling gas prices in coming years.

A report released today by economic modellers Jacobs showed that even cutting the target to a “real 20%” level would deliver $10 billion to fossil fuel energy companies, such as Energy Australia, Origin Energy and AGL.

“Big power companies will be the only ones to benefit from these changes as they reap windfall gains of $10 billion.

“Why would the government put the interests of big power companies ahead of those electricity users and regional Australia?

“The government should be returning certainty to clean energy investment by leaving the 2020 target alone and increasing investment out to 2030.

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