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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 10 Hansard (Thursday, 23 September 2010) . . Page.. 4451 ..

Opposition members interjecting—

MR CORBELL: They just don’t like it, Mr Speaker. They don’t like the fact that the government is putting in place a progressive renewable energy policy that now places the ACT at the forefront of delivering renewable energy in Australia.

The scheme will mean that we will see large scale renewable energy generators placed on the roofs of office buildings, shopping centres and warehouses. They will get a premium payment. Generators will get a premium payment to assist them with the costs. For the first time, a feed-in tariff will be made available to large scale generation. What this will mean is that the government can implement its election commitment to deliver a large scale solar farm for the ACT, capable of powering at least 10,000 homes.

Of course, the Liberal Party failed to understand that policy is about ends, not means. It is about getting the outcome on the ground. It is about making things happen. This policy will ensure that we are able to make it happen. Indeed, the large scale renewable energy generation category that is now in place will provide for 40 megawatts of renewable energy generation in the first auction. That first auction will allow us to test the market. It will allow us to test the mechanisms.

MR SPEAKER: Ms Porter, a supplementary question?

MS PORTER: Minister, what has been the response from industry to this announcement?

MR CORBELL: Unlike the Liberal Party, the response has been overwhelmingly positive. The response from industry has been a strong endorsement of the government’s leadership on the issue of implementing viable, long-term renewable energy policies.

I would draw to the Liberal Party’s attention, through you, Mr Speaker, the comments of Mr John Grimes, the Chief Executive of the Australian Solar Energy Society. Mr Grimes has labelled the announcement as:

… a game-changer for the industry, and will lead the way in filling the gap between those micro-systems and the huge 250 megawatt plants that the commonwealth is promoting.

He has gone on to say:

The ACT government has listened to industry, and this could see 10 or 15, maybe more, mid to large-scale projects in the ACT.

Similar feedback has been received from a range of industry players directly who welcome this new mechanism. Why do they welcome it? They welcome it because it gives them a long-term planning environment. They welcome it because it shifts the way renewable energy is delivered away from one-off cash grants, away from one-off cash subsidies and moves it towards—

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