Federal Labor Government's Climate Change Policies

01 Dec 2007Archived News Climate Change Matters

With Federal Labor Government's victory on Saturday 24th November, the incoming Government is set to undertake policy changes that have significant bearing on organisations and their business planning in relation to climate change.


To quote the opening line in their published fact sheet ‘A national energy efficiency goal’, the first steps will include policies and measures designed to:

"Capture energy savings in Australian homes. Make our government and community spaces cleaner and greener. Invest in cost effective efficiency opportunities at work".

Specifically the Federal Labor Government is expected to:

  • Immediately ratify the Kyoto Protocol with a trip to planned the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Bali the first week of December.
  • Introduce an Emission Trading System by 2010. The detailed design of this system will be finalised by the end of 2008.
  • Adopt a greenhouse gas reduction target of 60% on 1990 levels by 2050. Interim targets will only be finalised following the Garnaut review which is due to report in 2008.
  • Adopt a Mandatory Renewables Target of 20% by 2020 that would increase the Mandatory Renewable Energy Target (MRET) to 45,000GWh. The target would extend to 30% by 2030. The targets will be supported by a $500MRenewable Energy Fund intended to develop, commercialise and deploy renewable energy in Australia.
  • Establish a $90M Green Building Fund for 50% of the cost of retrofitting commercial buildings up to $200k per building, and $75M for small to medium manufacturers to improve their production processes and cut carbon emissions.
  • Drive efficiency gains in national commercial building standards. This will be achieved by harmonising the regulation of commercial building construction, refurbishment, performance assessment and rating, including national rating tools for sustainable design and performance, and recognition of market leaders.
  • Require disclosure of energy or environmental ratings for appropriate types of large commercial buildings at point of sale and point of lease. Mandatory disclosure will be phased in gradually, beginning with office buildings above a threshold of 5,000m sq.
  • Establish a $75M Climate Ready Program to support the development and commercialisation of clean, green technologies.
  • Develop a $150M Energy Innovation Fund for early stage research into solar thermal, photovoltaics, energy efficiency, energy storage and hydrogen.
  • Invest $500M under their National Clean Coal Fund to finance the deployment of clean coal technologies. The Fund will also provide for $50M for a pilot coal gasification plant in Queensland, $50M to demonstrate carbon capture and storage in NSW, and $5M to undertake mapping and testing of potential carbon storage sites in WA.

With the imminent introduction of these policies, the market is changing rapidly. We will endeavour to keep you up to date with information as it becomes available. 

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