In response to the National Energy Guarantee Consultation Paper, Australian Conservation Foundation (ACF) Chief Executive Officer, Kelly O’Shanassy, said:
“This paper indicates the Turnbull Government is planning to lock-in a dangerously weak pollution reduction target for electricity under the National Energy Guarantee that would be incompatible with ensuring a safe climate.
“The energy industry has at hand some of the most advanced and cheapest options for cutting pollution with wind and solar power. To propose just a 26 per cent cut for 2030 is a deliberate slowing of the clean energy transition that must happen and a boost to dirty coal power. And it places a disproportionately heavier burden on other sectors to meet our Paris climate targets.
“The Turnbull Government is also proposing to lock-in this weak target for ten years, and hamper future attempts to increase our ambition with a five-year notice period for any change.
“It is also concerning that the draft consultation paper considers a range of loopholes for big polluters to shirk their obligations, such as allowing them to make up annual shortfalls a year later or carryover surplus pollution cuts.
“Under the Turnbull Government’s watch Australian climate pollution is rising. This Government has failed time and again to implement a comprehensive climate change plan to cut our pollution. As it stands the National Energy Guarantee would continue this failure.”
Earlier this month ACF commissioned energy and climate market expert, Dr Bruce Mountain of Carbon and Energy Markets, to produce an independent analysis of the National Energy Guarantee. That analysis can be found here: https://d3n8a8pro7vhmx.cloudfront.net/auscon/pages/5287/attachments/original/1517523509/A_description_and_critique_of_the_National_Energy_Guarantee.pdf?1517523509