Australian Financial Review
5 August 2011
Slow start tipped for clean energy
A price on carbon will not drive significant investment in renewable energy until 2027 and is unlikely to affect regional economies such as the Latrobe and Hunter valleys, according to new research.
Despite the government’s claim that the scheme will drive investment in clean energy, reports by SKM-MMA and ROAM Consulting, which underpin Treasury modelling, highlight that it will produce relatively little reduction in emissions by 220 from the electricity industry.
This is because the low carbon price of $23 a tonne is not high enough to force closure of the major emitting coal-fired power stations, nor drive investment in baseload gas power plants because of high gas prices…
Australian Financial Review
Brief clippings from today’s AFR…
Australian Financial Review 29 June 2011
NAB chief backs Labor climate plan
Marcus Priest and Andrew Cornell
Labor’s carbon price scheme has gained strong backing from National Australia Bank chief executive Cameron Clyne but the government has faltered in the sales pitch for its household compensation package.
As signs emerged that Labor will struggle to reach a deal on carbon with the Greens and key NSW independents within weeks, Mr Clyne said the government’s plan offered certainty to drive investment, rating it economically superior to the Coalition’s “direct action plan”….
His comments follow those of Westpac Banking Corp chief executive Gail Kelly, who said last month that a carbon price was an “important economic reform and the single most effective policy mechanism for addressing climate change and preparing Australia for the global low carbon operating environment.”
[for the record, Rio Tinto's boss demurs]
MPCCC talks continue today, with Rob Oakeshott sticking around in Canberra rather than fly to Perth for a speaking gig at the Australian Mining and Exploration Companies thing in Perth (the one where brainac Christopher Monckton is sharing his latest pearls of wisdom).
“The major issues dividing the committee are over assistance to coal-fired power generators and coal-mines, but other crucial issues include setting emissions reduction targets when a fixed carbon price moves to an emissions trading scheme, as well as energy efficiency measures.”
Ross Garnaut shouting from sidelines that independent governance is crucial, and that the more compensation there is for coal-fired generators the less there is for tax cuts and innovation.
The Fin is, as far as I can see, the only paper giving detailed serious coverage on the negotiations/bun-fights around the Multi-Party Climate Change Committee.
Here’s snippets from Marcus Priest’s story in today’s paper
Crossbench push for solar
The Greens and key NSW independents have backed a push for a new national scheme to support the solar industry, amid criticism of the Productivity Commission’s findings about the expense of solar panels….
Bob Brown rejected a report that the government and Greens were close to a deal “We have very real hurdles in the negotiation process.” The AFR says “It is understood a deal is not expected for at least a fortnight….
A report by consultants Connection Research and financial analysts SuperRatings has found that most ASX100 companies would comfortably be able to absorb a $20 carbon tax, even without compensation.
So this story, Slow going on carbon pricing talks, from the Australian Associated Press is highly entertaining and informative. It’s about the ‘progress’ in discussions among the Multi-Party Climate Change Committee, and begins thus
THE federal government appears to have made little progress in reaching a carbon pricing compromise with the Australian Greens and crossbenchers during two days of “robust” talks in Canberra.
Greens Senator Christine Milne today said the Multi-Party Climate Change Committee (MPCCC) remained split on key issues surrounding the government’s plan to introduce a carbon tax and emissions trading scheme.
Asked if any progress had been made during the talks, Senator Milne said: “I think we’re a lot better informed about the complexities.
“There’s a long way to go till we get all on the same page.”
You can – and should – read the rest of it via the link above. It sounds like there was a “free and frank exchange of views”, eh?
I went and googled the outfits mentioned in the story, and it helped me a lot.
Business Council of Australia (and their emissions page)
The Business Council of Australia is an association of the CEOs of 100 of Australia’s leading corporations with a combined workforce of one million people. It was established in 1983 as a forum for Australia’s business leaders to contribute to public policy debates to build Australia as the best place in which to live, to learn, to work and do business.
(i.e not the complete knuckle-draggers. Capitalists, obviously, but not stupid ones.)
Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry
Is Australia’s peak council of business organisations& an authoritative national voice for Australian businesses of all sizes, in each industry, globally,nationally & regionally. The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) is Australia’s largest and most representative business association and the peak council of Australia’s State and Territory Chambers of Commerce and our major National Industry Associations.
(comparable to split in UK between the CBI and the BCC – outward-facing big picture sorts, versus (usually smaller) domestically orientated , yes?)
So I wonder if they have a little “good cop/bad cop” thang going on? A couple of days ago the BCA called for at the carbontax to start at ten bucks a tonne. So a day latter the ACCI say “No Great New Big Tax on Everything.” Playing Malcom to the BCA’s Martin?
Clean Energy Council
“The Clean Energy Council is the peak body representing Australia’s clean energy sector. It is an industry association made up of more than 440 member companies operating in the fields of renewable energy and energy efficiency.”
Yeah, makes sense… Sort of all the wind and solar thermal and so on people…
Not sure how this fits with what I read in the Australian Financial Review on the 26th…
Push for clean energy fund
Marcus Priest and John Kehoe
Pressure for a new clean energy technology fund attached to a new carbon price scheme is growing from a broad coalition of unions and environment, investor and renewable energy groups ahead of negotiations this weekend between Labor, the Greens and independent MPs.
The Australian Manufacturing Workers Union (AMWU) yesterday called for more than $6 billion over the next six years to be set aside for a new clean energy fund and energy efficiency programs.
AMWU secretary Dave Oliver said the government needed to establish a fund to partner private investors and provide grants, loan guarantees and tax breaks to support the low emissions industry and technoolgy development….