It doesn’t matter the political persuasion; Australians have passion for renewable energy – enough that any attempt to rein it in may see a backlash that would continue to haunt the government to the next election.
The Clean Energy Council says polling just released by Crosby Textor clearly demonstrates Australian voters across the political spectrum want more renewable energy.
“No matter whether they typically vote Liberal, Labor or Green, people want more renewable energy and they want the RET left alone to keep doing what it does best – deliver more solar, wind, bioenergy and more for Australia, along with lots of regional jobs and economic activity,” said the CEC’s Acting Chief Executive Kane Thornton.
Mr. Thornton said more than 80 per cent of those polled wanted the Renewable Energy Target left alone.
“Significantly, this support has strengthened over the last year during a period of sustained attack by some public commentators,” he said.
“It’s easy to understand why the broader community are such strong supporters of renewable energy. With the recent review again proving that cutting the RET would not deliver power bill savings, the political support for retaining the policy continues to grow.”
Recent modeling shows even a reduction in the RET would generate $10 billion in extra profit over the next 15 years for coal and gas-fired power generators – but households and businesses will pay more for their power.
The RET review report publicly released last week recommended shutting down the program for new entrants or dramatically slashing it, both of which the CEC and others say would destroy a growth industry employing 21,000 people.
If subsidies for small solar power systems were cut, it would also result in a massive increase in the cost of a system. The threat to subsidies has triggered an increase in interest in installing solar panels from Australians not wanting to roll the dice on the possibility of incentives being cut.