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Clean energy institutions must remain clean

The Clean Energy Council says a leaked draft of the Technology Investment Road Map which points to a revised remit of both the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) and the Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) could undermine investor confidence in the transition of Australia’s energy system.

A report in Nine Media today suggests that the road map illustrates a future where ARENA and the CEFC are encouraged to fund carbon capture and storage (CCS) and gas projects.

Investors in the Australian energy sector have made it clear that they see renewable energy and energy storage as the priority for the future of the Australian energy system.

Timely and strong investment in renewable energy and energy storage will deliver the least-cost transition to a reliable and clean energy system as well as providing significant jobs in rural and regional Australia. That's why we believe renewable energy and energy storage should be the centrepiece of Australia's energy policymaking and COVID-19 economic recovery strategy.

Gas has become an increasingly expensive source of electricity generation – particularly relative to the significant cost reduction for renewable energy and energy storage - and should therefore play a diminishing role in the electricity market in the future.

Government funding of new gas-fired electricity would be at odds with this market reality and undermine private sector investment confidence to invest in the renewable energy and energy storage necessary to transition to a reliable, least-cost and clean energy system.

While we welcome amendments to CEFC to establish the government's Grid Reliability Fund and a commitment to extend ARENA, we do not support changes to their remit to support gas or CCS or other fossil fuel-based generation. Such changes would create another unnecessary distraction and politicisation of energy policy and would further undermine investor confidence in new renewable energy and the energy sector in Australia.

These critical institutions should continue to focus on clean technologies.

ENDS

For more information or to arrange an interview, contact:

Jane Aubrey
Clean Energy Council Media Manager
[email protected]
+61 409 470 683