Out of 24,000 submissions received during the consultation process of the Renewable Energy Target review, far fewer than 1% called for a reduction in the RET.
According to the Clean Energy Council, 23,272 positive submissions came from the community, plus another 865 more detailed submissions. Of the more detailed documents, 754 were supportive of the policy being maintained or boosted, 55 were mixed or neutral, and just 56 called for the target to be reduced or abolished – 0.23 percent of the overall total.
“The Australian public has again shown its overwhelming support for renewable energy through this review, in addition to the fact that over 4 million Australians already live or work under a solar power system,” said Clean Energy Council Acting Chief Executive Kane Thornton.
Prime Minister Tony Abbott has been quiet on the topic of renewable energy in the past couple days since it was reported his desire is to axe the target entirely.
Opposition Environment spokesman Mark Butler has reminded the Government of its commitment to the RET.
“This was a policy that was working. It tripled the number of jobs, it attracted billions in investment, it started to reduce carbon pollution from the electricity sector and it was a policy that Tony Abbott signed up to on two elections – not just one, but in two elections”.
RenewEconomy’s Giles Parkinson says a threat of the demise of the RET could trigger another rush on small-scale solar panel systems.
“Tony Abbott’s renewed attacked on the renewable energy industry has effectively killed the wind energy and large scale solar market in Australia – at least for the next few years. But it could spark another “solar-coaster” as households and small businesses rush to install rooftop solar systems before the remaining incentives are closed.”
Mr. Parkinson states well-placed sources believe the small-scale component of the RET will be ended, or sharply curtailed.
Solar supporters wanting to lend their voice to saving the RET can take action including contacting their local member and/or signing a Solar Citizens petition.