The Environment a Casualty in the Energy War

The State’s household solar subsidy scheme could be argued to have been less than adequately administered, but there is no doubting that the limited support that was offered to the renewable industry through the scheme was both necessary and utilized.

While the costs of the scheme may have come in at considerably more than anticipated, this is an indication of public support for the scheme itself with the ‘capacity cap’ being breached as a result of the popularity of the scheme.

Today’s West reported that taxpayers would be footing the bill for the ‘botched scheme’ for a decade, however it could also be said that energy consumers will be reaping the rewards of the scheme for many more years as the costs incurred by the net feed-in tariff is an indication of energy being fed back into the grid to be utilized by those very same taxpayers.

Robin Chapple Greens WA spokesperson on Energy, sees support of the renewable energy industry in this fossil fuel heavy State as a positive step towards a low carbon future.

“Compared to the massive investment this State pours into the fossil fuel industry, a paltry $450 million over ten years to support the generation of low emissions energy is a drop in the ocean.

If this state is to truly make use of its plentiful renewable resources, it will need the support of the Government to do so”, Mr Chapple said.

“My criticism of the scheme itself is only in its inconsistent policy and administration, which led to the photovoltaic industry being disadvantaged by the State’s abrupt cessation of the scheme. There was very limited consultation with industry on the design of the scheme, and no transition period prior to its sudden conclusion.

While the industry is recovering now, this is by virtue of the lower cost of the technology and public investment in renewables, despite the State’s obvious lack of support for their implementation on a broad scale”.

“In my opinion this State Government has abrogated its responsibility to support the renewable energy industry, leaving clean energy policy and carbon reduction entirely to the Commonwealth. The solar subsidy scheme was the solitary example of forward-thinking energy policy to come out of this term of Government and one that should be supported.”

For more information please contact Robin Chapple on 0409 379 263 or 9486 8255


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