Labor confirms it rejects 31,000GWh renewables offer from Abbott | RenewEconomy

Labor confirms it rejects 31,000GWh renewables offer from Abbott

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Labor confirmed it has rejected latest offer of compromise from Abbott government on renewable energy target, saying it would have decimated the industry.

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stock-footage-close-up-on-turning-blades-of-wind-turbine-clouds-moving-on-background-partly-blue-skyThe Australian Labor Party has confirmed that it has rejected the latest offer of compromise from the Abbott government on the renewable energy target, saying it would have decimated the industry.

Newspaper reports said that industry minister Ian Macfarlane and environment minister Greg Hunt made an offer to Labor of cutting the current 41,000GWh target to just 31,000GWh, highlighting the view that the Abbott government had hardly moved since the Warburton Review was completed six months ago. It was suggested by Macfarlane last week that any offer would include a high rooftop solar component, so the large scale component would have been even lower.

“Labor met with the Government yesterday, after weeks of inaction from the Government,” a spokeswoman for Labor climate spokesman Mark Butler said in an emailed statement.

“The Government made an offer that will decimate the industry, cost jobs, stall investment, see household power prices rise and increase Australia’s carbon pollution.

“Labor does not support that position. Labor has consistently rejected Tony Abbott’s attempts to ruin the renewable energy industry.

“The clean energy industry does not support the Government’s position, and we’ve taken our lead from what’s best for the industry.”

Labor has been prepared to negotiate a compromise in the mid-to-high 30,000GWh, including an exemption for the aluminium industry, but has refused to budge further to meet the Abbott demands.

The large scale industry has been at a standstill for nearly two years because of uncertainty about policy. Macfarlane warned last week that he would allow the uncertainty to remain, and the stagnation to continue, unless the clean energy industry accepted his offer.


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  1. The Lismoron 6 years ago

    “Macfarlane warned last week that he would allow the uncertainty to remain, and the stagnation to continue, unless the clean energy industry accepted his offer”

    So, yet again we have threats & menaces to squander thousands of RET employment opportunities as well as buggarap the climate just so Abbott, MacFarlane and his (Hi-viz) colleagues can earn their party’s payola from their real electorate………
    Mr. Coal Miner (good 4 humanity) & Ms See Essgee (sick kids? not us!)
    Of course they have broken no law despite the threats & menaces.
    Who will rid us of this turbulent priest and his cohort of worshippers of mammon!

  2. barrie harrop 6 years ago

    Its time to end this plaything for both sides of politics,Aust is becoming the laughing stock of the World,with billions of dollars of investment withering on the vine,let alone thousands of jobs now at risk.

  3. Colin Paterson 6 years ago

    Well Mr. MacF****wit…………………I’m one of those people who have lost their job as a result of your lack of understanding of the business benefits attributed to the RE industry. Once the investors go they will not return. They will go to other enlightened countries who not only get the environmental benefits but also understand the business upside to the economy……………’s about time you retired (you old fossil..excuse the pun!), kick out your lap dog Hunt and get someone in there that actually understands business!!

    • Chris 6 years ago

      Hang in there Colin, we need you. Come the 14th of January 2017 hopefully sense will reign.

      • michael 6 years ago

        all those business benefits which aren’t great enough to ensure investment unless governement forces (makes the business case a no brainer through inducements) people to invest?
        from inside the industry Colin, how about you describe these business benefits which can be gained without the RET?

        • Chris Fraser 6 years ago

          … like the benefits currently being used as an inducement to mine fossil fuels ?

          • michael 6 years ago

            Guessing you’re an Australia Institute fan then…

          • Chris Fraser 6 years ago

            I doubt that even i would be in widespread agreement – but – thanks for noting the linkages.So, we have to make sure those miners and drillers are operating in complete transparency such as that which is provided by RET. RET investment returns more than it costs, with investment returns spread more generally among the whole population. No doubt the capital strike will be impacting fossil operations as well, especially if the inducements are withdrawn.

        • john 6 years ago

          Put both on an even keel and I am afraid to build a new power supply generator you will find that wind on land or solar will win hands down mate.
          You can not compare tax payer funded old gen sets that are horribly inefficient with either.
          Not to mention the tax subsidy that FF users gain which is frankly laughable in the extreme.

          • michael 6 years ago

            If you read this website, you know we are in an oversupply situation, so until it is building required new stations, your point has little validity to current arguments in parliament

          • nakedChimp 6 years ago

            michael, if you don’t believe in man-made climate change, then naturally you also don’t have a problem with the old coal-stations to run for as long as possible.
            Most people on this website are in opposition to that and want RE to replace the coal-power-plant, which naturally implies an oversupply of electricity as long as the coal-power-plant is online. So in our view it’s only an oversupply for as long as the coal station(s) stay online.. but most here don’t want them online anymore, and it doesn’t matter to them if they seem cheaper on paper.

          • michael 6 years ago

            yeah fair enough, and with those conditions around what constitutes oversupply you can make the argument. however, the original post stated a “lack of understanding of the business benefits attributed to the RE”, this is an entirely different statement and shows a lack of understanding, which is worth pointing out to enable a more informed conversation. A conversation such as your informed acknowledgement of the true situation.

          • john 6 years ago

            Yes I am very aware of that as I understand it some 5 gen sets have been taken our of service.
            It would appear the argument is more about the continued loss of value to the owners of generators and the problem with falling demand which is jacking up the unit cost of distributing power with a fixed return on capital for the grid.
            This has come about due to efficiency in utilising power industrial downturn and RE hollowing out the daily demand.
            The grid should be written down in value.
            RE has a positive downward pressure on wholesale price.
            Storage will lower the peak from late afternoon early evening as it is now causing more gen sets to close as well as putting up the unit cost further.
            The basic tenant is that both parties went to the election with the 41,000 GWh figure as the agreed target for the RET.
            Business can only work inside a framework where things do not change month by month.
            Because of the situation little large scale has gone ahead.

          • Alastair Leith 6 years ago

            It’s even more relevant, how else to accelerate RE towards 100% RE. That is the goal, Micheal, not balancing some dumb argument inside your own head.

          • michael 6 years ago

            If all else fails in a conversation, just call the other side dumb, got it.
            If the goal is to get to 100% RE as quick as possible with no consideration for any other social or financial considerations, then yes, you are correct. Well done, have fun with that in the real world.

          • Alastair Leith 6 years ago

            Including $5B a year in hospitalisations from coal pollution alone, aquifer damage from fracking for 10,000 years could be quite a pretty penny too. And then there’s the old externality call life on planet Earth.

        • Alastair Leith 6 years ago

          That’s a straw man argument, Micheal. Renewables are now cheaper than new coal and new gas but in a market where decline is falling (since 2009/10) and we must decarbonise our entire economy in a decade (starting 2010) then we the market must be geared to serve our needs not those of corporate mates, billionaires and wealthy shareholders with influence.

          The question is: what is the cheapest way to get to 100% RE and less than zero carbon emissions? Your question is irrelevant and FF are riding on 50 years of state funding so it makes your point even more irrelevant, and frankly, a bit pathetic.

  4. Kevin O'Dea 6 years ago

    It is high time the Greenhouse Mafia in Australia conceded defeat in their war on the RE industry and acknowledge the reality of Climate Change. The World has moved on, and Australia is losing out on investment capital and jobs as well as becoming a laughing stock, just so a few coal mining companies can protect their old business model.

  5. Robert Johnston 6 years ago

    I for one am happy to see the RET as an election issue if it remains untouched as MacFarlane has threatened. Its one topic that will cut the feet of the coalition as they try to climb on board the good ship re-election.

  6. Rob G 6 years ago

    What alarms me is the almost non-existent coverage of this on main stream news sites. Most Australians are supportive of a renewable transition (some sources suggest up to 90% of the public support it!). It has the potential to shift a significant amount of votes to parties that support. And yet how aware are the public of this ongoing hostility from Abbott’s government? Such news may have caused more grief for Abbott this week in the polls and may have delivered the knock-out punch to finally remove him.

  7. john 6 years ago

    Surprise not.
    Our energy minister is old school.
    I bet the said minister can not even type.
    Would not have a clue about where the world is heading with energy and the transition of energy that is going to happen.
    Oh I am sorry too big a word that { transition} perhaps simplify FF has a limited future as newer science driven technology is going to displace and reduce its value.
    Gee I mentioned science now we do have a problem; we do not believe in science here in Team Australia guess I better frame it simple.
    Coal is not the future you dumb bugger it is 1880 idea of the future we are actually in the 2015 plus age you understand?

  8. Leigh Ryan 6 years ago

    If the government fails the people then the people must take up the cause themselves by installing Solar PV, be closing accounts with the masterminds behind the governments stand AGL, Energy Australia and Origin, then they must call on the state governments to support the RET, they must tell them that words of support are not enough, unionists must take a stand and insist that employers install Solar PV or Wind Turbine technologies, If this federal government wants an ideological war, let’s give them one.

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