Renewable energy advocates are pushing for Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to dump bills that seek to abolish the Australian Renewable Energy Agency, Clean Energy Finance Corporation and the Climate Change Authority.
Legislation to scrap the CEFC and ARENA – the projects of which environment minister Greg Hunt has recently been spruiking – have twice been blocked by the Senate. The Notice Paper for the first sitting day of Parliament in 2016 shows that bills to abolish ARENA, the CEFC and CCA all remain parked.
“The Australian Government has shown promising signs that it’s changing tack on renewable energy but now must follow through with action,” Solar Council chief executive John Grimes said.
“If the Australian Government is committed to innovation, it must be committed to clean energy. Removing legislation in the Parliament to abolish the Australian Renewable Energy Agency and the Clean Energy Finance Corporation would instantly boost confidence in the sector,” Mr Grimes said.
“If Malcolm Turnbull doesn’t act on this then people will start to think he’s just another Tony Abbott.”
Australian Wind Alliance National Coordinator Andrew Bray said Australia was lagging behind the rest of the world when it came to renewables investment, and government support was essential to ensure a rapid shift to clean energy.
“Australia must embrace wind power if we are to keep up with the shift in the world energy economy. Wind remains the cheapest source of large scale renewable energy here, and overseas. Like solar power, the cost is also dropping,” Mr Bray said.
“To future-proof the nation’s energy supply, the Turnbull Government must move on from rhetoric to concrete support for a renewable energy push. A change of tone is not enough.”