Legislative Assembly for the ACT: Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 5 Hansard (10 May) . . Page.. 1806 ..
MS ORR: Minister, can you detail why the ACT took the position it did on the national energy guarantee at the COAG Energy Council meeting?
MR RATTENBURY: Certainly, the ACT went to the meeting committed to being at the table because we know that we need to make progress on the national energy system. We need a system that is reliable, provides affordable energy and meets future needs of the grid in Australia whilst reducing our greenhouse gas emissions.
It would be fair to say that we do remain deeply concerned, as I touched on in my earlier answer.
Opposition members interjecting—
MADAM SPEAKER: Some silence for Mr Rattenbury to answer the question, thank you.
Mr Coe interjecting—
MADAM SPEAKER: Mr Coe, I did say that you were going to be warned.
Mr Hanson interjecting—
MADAM SPEAKER: Both Mr Hanson and Mr Coe are warned.
MR RATTENBURY: One of the biggest concerns we have is the impact the national energy guarantee will have on the future of the renewable energy industry in Australia. What we have seen already is a freeze on investment in Australia. I have been meeting recently with key players in the renewable energy sector who have outlined to me the fact that there are already signs of an investment freeze.
We have just seen, courtesy of the analysis by Mark Butler, the federal shadow minister for climate change and energy, out of this week's budget, the fact that the federal government is already investing less money in the renewable energy sector through the Clean Energy Finance Corporation, as he has identified. After drawing nearly $2 billion of investment in 2017-18, they will only be drawing $530 million in 2018-19.
We are already seeing the impact, the chilling effect, that the national energy guarantee is having on the future of the renewables industry here in Australia coming from both the federal budget and from experts in the industry telling us this.
MR PETTERSSON: Minister, can you provide details on how the ACT is moving ahead with its renewable electricity targets in light of how the national energy guarantee is progressing?
MR RATTENBURY: I am certainly happy to answer that for Mr Pettersson. The ACT is proceeding with our 100 per cent renewable energy target. We are well on track. We recently saw the wind farm in the northern tablelands, Sapphire Wind Farm,