RET under attack
Australia’s 2 percent Renewable Energy Target by 2020 is under fire, with claims that the goal is adding too much to the price of power.
Prime Minister Julia Gillard has said the Government will review the RET in the face of calls from Origin Energy chief Grant King for the target to be scrapped.
King said this week that the RET as it stood would actually push Australia to 26 percent renewable generation by 2020. The higher the percentage of renewables in the generation mix, he says, the higher costs will be.
Lobby group the Energy Users Association says renewable energy schemes are adding up to a third to the price of wholesale power, and pushing up retail prices by as much as 7 percent this year.
Other groups, including the Australian Industry Group and NSW regulator the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Authority have also called for the target to be reviewed. IPART says the target will add an average of $316 to household power bills this year.
But the RET has strong support in the conservation movement, with Greens leader Christine Milne suggesting it should be extended to a 50 percent target by 2030.
The Climate Change Authority is now set to review the RET as one of its first acts under the carbon pricing regime.
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