Bioenergy, Hydropower, Solar, Wind Power

BCSE Praises NSW Legislation to Cut Emissions

Recent initiatives by New South Wales’ Premier Iemma, namely the Greenhouse Abatement Scheme and its Energy Savings Fund, won praise from the Australian Business Council for Sustainable Energy’s (BCSE) executive director, Ric Brazzale, for their innovative, market-based approach to reducing greenhouse emissions.

“These two schemes represent key steps in getting markets working to deliver cost-effective action on greenhouse emissions,” said Brazzale. “Premier Iemma’s commitment to a binding target to limit greenhouse emissions to no higher than 2000 levels by 2025 is another welcome step. This will provide a sound basis to guide investments in sustainable energy.” NSW has an abundance of renewable energy resources that can be used to meet NSW’s growing power needs and the industry awaits further policy commitments that will build upon NSW’s solid renewables industry — solar, biomass, wind and hydro. NSW also has a number of emerging renewable technologies including geothermal and wave that are at an early stage of development and offer enormous potential. “Of course NSW can’t do it alone and it is critical that other jurisdictions step up to the plate. Victoria’s commitment to implement a market-based scheme to achieve its 10 percent renewables target is another key component for other states to emulate,” Brazzale said. National action and policy consistency is essential, the release states, and the demonstrated leadership of NSW and Victoria will help facilitate an Australia-wide increase in the use of renewable energy, and greater incentives to get the market for energy efficiency working. The BCSE looks forward to participating in a national summit on climate change with its members seeking support from other states in a national emissions trading scheme. Across Australia the sustainable energy industry accounts for $5.7 billion in annual sales including over $400 million in exports; direct employment of over 20,000 people; 22 percent of electricity generation and 36,000 GWh of displaced power from energy efficiency (equivalent to 15 percent of current electricity generation); and avoided greenhouse emissions of 88 million tons (equivalent to 44 percent of total electricity emissions). “The debate on climate change is over. If Australia is to play its part in avoiding dangerous climate change in the future we must double the deployment of sustainable energy solutions today,” said Brazzale.