Federal Election 2019: What can solar industry expect?
By May 18, our country will have to decide which party they will choose to win the Federal Election. Regardless of which party you support, it is good to know that both parties have plans for the energy sector of the country which is intended to bring electricity costs down. Australian households are on the lookout to find viable alternatives to paying for rising power costs and the rising cost of standard of living.
Fortunately, days before the election, consumers can expect a good amount of savings starting April 30. Australian Energy Regulator is set to launch a “pricey safety net” which includes energy retailers setting their prices against the regular market prices. The legislature has said the change could enable families and businesses to save hundreds of dollars of which will be reflected in electric bills starting 1 July 2019. In the first week of April, additional energy policies were declared to address environmental and electricity concerns. Here are a few of the things that the political parties are considering:
ONE-OFF ENERGY PAYMENT
One-fourth of Australia’s qualified voters can anticipate that a one-off installment can cover the rising cost of electric bills. This is an Energy Assistance Payment of $75 and $125 for singles and couples respectively. This will be paid into the financial balances of 3.9 million veterans, carers, single guardians, matured beneficiaries and individuals who receive the inability to support pensions benefits before July, according to News Corp reports.
“This is acknowledgment that there are cost-of-living pressures and this support is going to go to around four million Australian, pensioners, aged pensioners and those on the disability support pension, single parents payments and veteran payments,” Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said.
SUPPORTING COAL AND RENEWABLES
Meanwhile, the Morrison Government has officially declared that it will put $1.4 billion in equity towards the massive expansion of the Snowy Hydro scheme and another $56 million to quicken the delivery of the Marinus Link, an interconnector to produce power between Victoria and Tasmania. This initiative is expected to force energy prices down and make power more reliable.
The link is just one of 12 plans short-listed for conceivable government support after 66 articulations of interests were gathered. Others include gas and hydro projects as well as a small coal overhaul venture in NSW in Lake Macquarie.
The shortlist of projects for the Underwriting New Generation Investment program.
RENEWABLE ENERGY PLAN
A massive increment in sustainable energy investment would make 70,000 jobs and lower household electricity bills under Labor’s energy plan. Labor will double the initial investment in the Clean Energy Finance Corporation from $10 billion to $20 billion, to help new renewable power generation and capacity. Moreover, they will urge people to install solar batteries by giving $2000 discounts for 100,000 families, with an objective of one million batteries by 2025. Also, as part of their objectives, a large portion of the cars sold in Australia in 2025 is expected to be electric controlled and by 2030 the move against oil motors would see half of all passenger vehicles on streets powered by electricity.
Labor says it would work with industry to cut pollution while ensuring businesses with a high dependence on low-cost electricity while remaining to be competitive in the foreign markets. “Labor’s approach isn’t about punishing polluters, it’s about partnering with industry to find real, practical solutions to cut pollution, in a way that protects and grows industry and jobs,” says the policy statement.
Aside from the energy policies mentioned above, Clean Energy Council has also suggested the following energy policies that can be adopted by the parties:
- Commit to a zero emissions electricity sector target well before 2050 and at least 50 percent renewable energy by 2030
- Accelerate reforms and financial support to develop Australia’s electricity transmission network for a clean energy future
- Encourage the uptake of energy storage and batteries
- Maintain the SRES
- Mandate solar power in all new homes
- Support innovation in finance, technology, and integration and extend the ARENA and the CEFC
- Commit to the development of a clean energy export strategy
- Support skills development to meet the demand of a growing clean energy industry
- Support the establishment of a battery manufacturing and recycling industry
- Develop a single national electrical safety body.
All parties have given a good set of plans for renewables in the country. The coming days will dictate if these schemes and projects will be improved or retained. But more than the proposed plans, the Australian households and businesses are waiting for concrete actions once the elected government is in the position.
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Chang, C. (2019, April 1). Federal election 2019: The energy policies of Labor and the Coalition. Retrieved from https://www.news.com.au/finance/money/costs/federal-election-2019-the-energy-policies-of-labor-and-the-coalition/news-story/89f6a8bc58e181f70158f3c71b6e89e5
Clean Energy Council (2019, February 18). Federal Election Policy Recommendations. Retrieved from https://www.cleanenergycouncil.org.au/resources/resources-hub/federal-election-policy-recommendations