20 October 2010 -The price tag placed on pollution in order to drive investment in alternative energy by the UK and China is up to 17 times that of Australia’s according to a new report commissioned by The Climate Institute.

The report, by Vivid Economics, assessed the incentives to clean energy deployment applied to the electricity generation sector in 2010 in Australia, China, Japan, South Korea, the United Kingdom and the United States. Of these countries, Australia’s price on carbon was found to be the second lowest, with the UK and China leading the way on carbon reduction incentives.

The Climate Institute’s deputy CEO Erwin Jackson said that leading clean energy countries like the UK and China are now reaping the economic benefits of carbon price incentives.

“The UK is reaping the benefits of its policies to price pollution, in addition to its participation in the European Emissions Trading Scheme, and has an equivalent price tag around 17 times that of Australia’s. Investment in clean energy in the UK reached around US$ 11 billion in 2009 and captured around 17 per cent of the market in the countries studied,” said Mr Jackson.

“China’s policies to meet its targets and dominate the global clean energy race imply a price tag on pollution over eight times higher than that of Australia’s. In 2009, clean energy investment in China reached US$35 billion compared with US$18 billion in the USA and less than $US1 billion in Australia.”