Corbell slams NEG as “neither ambitious, nor transparent”

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Architect of Australia’s most successful renewables policies says proposed National Energy Guarantee lacks ambition, transparency, and won’t hit climate targets.

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The chief architect of some of Australia’s most successful renewable energy policies, Simon Corbell, has dismissed the federal government’s proposed National Energy Guarantee as “neither transparent, nor ambitious,” and says it will fail to meet Australia’s Paris climate obligations.

Corbell, who as environment minister for the Australian Capital Territory led its nation-leading transition to renewables, is currently the independent renewable energy advocate for the Victorian Labor government.

As we have noted, Corbell’s 100 per cent by 2020 renewable target has, by far and away, led the clean energy transition in Australia, paving the way for states like South Australia and Victoria to follow suit.

In his role consulting with the Andrews government, Victoria has become the first Australian state to legislate its renewable energy target – 45 per cent by 2025 – and has encouraged large-scale renewables and energy storage reverse auctions of the type that were spear-headed by the ACT.

Speaking at the opening of the Clean Energy Council’s 2018 Wind Industry Forum in Melbourne on Wednesday, Corbell said the role of state and federal policy remained crucial to the ongoing shift to renewables in Australia.

But with the Turnbull government’s proposed National Energy Guarantee as the central pillar of current public policy debate, things were not looking good.

“In my view, as the ‘independent’ renewable energy advocate (for Victoria) – not the view of the state government – this proposal is neither transparent, nor ambitious,” Corbell told the forum.

“It does not underpin, or send the signals that are needed for long-term renewable energy development in Australia.

“It fails to address the need to establish a clear pathway to achieve the complete decarbonisation of the Australian electricity supply sector by mid-Century.

“And that is the objective that is required, if we are to meet our obligations under the Paris agreement.”

Corbell said what Australia needed was a suite of measures that would underpin renewable energy development, set strong targets for its increased penetration into the electricity supply sector, and create new and transparent markets for new technologies such as storage.

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20 Comments
  1. Peter F 8 months ago

    He is being polite. He should have said it is a scam designed to protect large retailers and coal generators and keep power prices high and reliability tenuous

    • Hettie 8 months ago

      And not even a very clever scam, since those objectives have been obvious from day one.
      I was going to say the the only surprise Is that it has not already been dismissed out of hand. Perhaps not, since our sorry excuse for a government is passionately devoted to ideology and idiocy. Pathologically allergic to anything resembling evidence based practice.
      One day soon Australia will look back on the years since 2013 in slack jawed wonder that so many people could have been stupid enough to vote for these cretins not once, but twice.
      As for Tasmania, well, they’ve always been a bit odd.

      • Joe 8 months ago

        I thought QLD’ers were the odd bods in Australia. Perhaps things have improved up north with Premier Annastacia in charge. The COALition long ago ‘immunised’ itself from using evidence to guide good policy.

      • Nick Kemp 8 months ago

        We may be odd but at least we use hydro for most of our electricity

        • Hettie 8 months ago

          Nick, that was very naughty of me, to say that. Statist. Apologies. And $5million is a lot of election funding from the pokies mob.
          I think that a fact check showed 356 people whose jobs rely on pokies in Tassie, but never let facts get in the way. Maybe 536. Certainly not 5,000.
          And hydro! Way to go.
          Me, I’m a Kiwi, so no stranger to hydro.
          Sorry for the slur.

    • Phil NSW 8 months ago

      If we are going to have the NEG then use it as an instrument for the environment. All zero emission generators must be given supply contracts for 100% of their generation and all mid to large scale projects must have offset capacity to ensure stable average supply. The offset capacity maybe externally contracted. Further, all suppliers should be placed on a register and the lower the emission the more their generation has to be selected. Once a zero emission generator knows they will be given preference in the supply chain the necessary investment will occur. FF generators will move to the back row quickly. Retailers must report their supply emissions quarterly and if they fall short of the target (set by an independent committee with no more than 20% government and no more than 20% retailer voting rights in the committee) then they loose supply contracts to conforming retailers.

      • Hettie 7 months ago

        Sounds like a plan, but who would legislate it?

        • Phil NSW 7 months ago

          If the NEG is to be constructed by the ESB and they are currently working through the submissions they will have the opportunity to put forward this concept. This plan has been articulated in the submissions.

          • Hettie 7 months ago

            I’d love to see that happen, but will NOT hold my breath.

    • Alastair Leith 7 months ago

      But Barnaby insists AGL is getting rid of Liddel to “short the market” 😂😂😂

  2. MaxG 8 months ago

    Needless to say that a party full of climate deniers has fundamentally no interest in meeting neither any CO2 target nor any other ‘climate-related target.
    Or as @disqus_9zhHMNTp7U:disqus put it: a government that is “Pathologically allergic to anything resembling evidence based practice.”

  3. Malcolm M 8 months ago

    It would be great if COAG recommends that the NEG is referred to the Productivity Commission with a question such as whether it lead to the Australian market being more or less efficient than that of our major trading partners over the 2020 to 2025 period ?

    • Hettie 7 months ago

      Great idea

  4. Robert Westinghouse 8 months ago

    Australian Politics is at the forefront of giving Big Power the biggest ride of its life. Vote 1 Malcolm. We own Snowy and we plan to sell it to the Chinese, ban PV and outlaw batteries because it is BAD for business. We are Open for Business – Donald Duck the People. But the ALP fails to have the balls to stand up for the little person. I hate the lot of them….I am very despressed

    • Phil 8 months ago

      Australia does at least offer the “little guy” the opportunity to DIY a lot of things.You can live in regional Australia off grid with all the necessities and a healthy lifestyle for very little money compared to other developed countries.

      • Robert Westinghouse 8 months ago

        Good point. Don’t tell anyone. But being a little socially responsible (unlike the government) we need to help the poor bastard in the cities – they are becoming unlivable. We moved 10 years ago because we could not afford it…now we cannot afford to go back.

    • Faulco Pete 8 months ago

      Well, Rob, it’s probably time for you to join us who vote for Sustainable Australia party; they’ve got the best set of policies that I’ve ever seen.

      • Robert Westinghouse 8 months ago

        Hi Pete….the new party seems good. Is it true Dick Smith is on board? No phone number on the website…it is a secret society…ha-ha…

        • Hettie 7 months ago

          See my reply to Falco.

      • Hettie 7 months ago

        Don’t lose sight of the imperative to sack the Coalition. Must put ALP 2 to do that.

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