Australia can achieve the twin objectives of a secure energy system and lower carbon emissions through putting in place sensible policies that allow us to overcome the current energy crisis by developing our abundance of natural energy resources, the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry has said in its submission to the Finkel Review.
The Australian Chamber has today released its submission to the Independent Review into the Future Security of the National Electricity Market, chaired by the Chief Scientist, Dr Alan Finkel AO.
James Pearson, CEO of the Australian Chamber, said: “Businesses and households depend on energy that is affordable, reliable and secure. The Finkel Review offers a golden opportunity to map out a policy pathway for governments at all levels, as well as industry, to achieve these aims.”
The Australian Chamber submission makes several recommendations to the Finkel Review:
- Given climate change is a global problem requiring a co-ordinated national response, states should not pursue independent renewable energy targets.
- Energy policy should be technology-neutral so that it allows each energy source to be assessed on its own merits.
- Assessment of projects to develop natural energy resources should take a risk-based approach rather than one involving broad moratoria or bans on gas exploration and development.
- Energy security can be improved through changing the rules for the energy market, updating planning frameworks for the Large Renewable Energy Target and assessing the role of new intermittent energy projects.
Mr Pearson said: “Policies that undermine these recommendations put at risk Australia’s energy security, reliability and affordability. It is vital the Finkel Review blueprint is adopted as a package; if proposed security and reliability solutions increase the price of energy, they need to come with countervailing measures to put downward pressure on prices. Otherwise, they are not solutions.
“In the long term our aim should be to reduce the real cost of energy given Australia’s abundance of natural energy resources and the importance of maintaining the global competitiveness of Australian industry.
“We look forward to seeing the blueprint presented by the Finkel Review to the Council of Australian Governments by the middle of the year. We encourage federal, state and territory government to engage constructively with this process and find the political will to take action.”