Page 3611 - Week 12 - Tuesday, 22 October 2013

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90 per cent renewable energy target and we have that target to be achieved by the year 2020. We also have a greenhouse gas reduction target which seeks to achieve a 40 per cent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by that same year.

This equates to around two million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions across the ACT economy in terms of reduction by the year 2020. Renewable energy generation is a critical part of achieving that target because so much of our emissions are a result of the use of non-renewable electricity sources, the use of energy, particularly electricity, in buildings, both residential and commercial.

Making a shift to renewable energy through large-scale renewable energy generation is critical for us to achieve our greenhouse gas reduction targets. That is why the government is supporting the development of renewable energy through the large-scale solar option process. It is why, of course, we have completed now allocations worth 40 megawatts of renewable energy generation over the last 12 months as part of our large-scale auction process, and it is why we have now two other grants of entitlement having been made to Zhenfa Australia and to Elementus Energy for proposed plants at Uriarra and Mugga Lane. Those plants need to work through the approvals process, which FRV have already achieved, and, of course, they are now able to start construction.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Wall.

MR WALL: Minister, what is the cost to ACT residents for each of the solar projects?

MR CORBELL: The cost is extremely modest. The full 40 megawatts of solar generation allocated under the large-scale solar auction process provides for a maximum average household cost of 45c per household per week in 2016, reducing to 27c per household per week in 2021. These are very modest costs for ACT consumers. It is worth making the observation that they are approximately half the cost that the government itself estimated in deciding to establish the large-scale auction process. In our projections and our assessments, we anticipated that the cost per household per week would be around $1 per household per week, reducing to about half that, 50c per household per week. Instead the actual result is a maximum average household cost of only 45c per household per week, reducing to 27c per household per week by the year 2021.

This really does demonstrate the significant economies of scale that are being achieved in large-scale renewables, the massive reduction in the cost of PV panels in particular in the global economy, and the advantage that comes from our city being an early adopter of large-scale renewable energy and the efficiencies that come from that.

I can certainly assure all members that Canberrans are getting excellent value for money, a very low and manageable cost for their new renewable energy sources, and at the same time we are creating jobs in our economy and, of course, making a significant contribution to cutting our greenhouse gas emissions.

MADAM SPEAKER: Supplementary question, Ms Porter.

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