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PM’s wild policy spree: PM takes the “renewables” out of MRET: makes nuclear and CO2 dumps mandatory; and implies forced merger of state energy-mix targets

Posted by gmarkets on 25 September, 2007

In a pre-election move the Prime Minister – designed to look “green”; but in fact far from that – had re-invented the mandatory energy requirement but removed the renewables; he added CO2 dumps and nuclear power to mandatory requirements. According to John Breusch, of The Australian Financial Review (25/9/2007, p.4) John Howard announced on the weekend a target to provide 30,000 gigawatt hours a year of electricity from low-emissions sources by 2020 — an estimated 15 to 20 per cent of the country’s power supply.

Howard rejects in 2004: In 2004, Howard rejected a proposal to double the mandatory renewable energy target — a smaller increase than that announced on Sunday — claiming it “would impose substantial new costs on the economy and would benefit too few technologies”.

Nuke fix and CO2 dump solutions: A key difference with Howard’s new target is that it applies CO2 dumps and nuclear power, and not just renewable technologies like solar and wind. “The measure, which essentially amalgamates state and federal renewable energy targets, was an admission from the government that a national emissions trading scheme will not be enough to drive the early take-up of clean technologies”.

The Australian Financial Review, 25/9/2007, p. 4

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