The Australian Government Department of Environment and Energy has released a detailed design of the National Energy Guarantee (NEG) for consultation.
The report includes information on the mechanics of setting and changing the emissions reduction target, the proposed design of the emissions-intensive trade-exposed exemption, and the potential use of offsets.
Australia’s peak body representing large energy consumers, the Energy Users’ Association of Australia (EUAA), welcomed the new details of the NEG but expressed some reservations about some policy details.
“The Energy Security Board (ESB) has worked hard in a limited timeframe to bring the NEG to this point and we welcome their commitment to developing the policy in a consultative and cooperative way,” said EUAA Chief Executive Officer, Andrew Richards.
“There are a number of good aspects within the draft design that we are very pleased to support, however, we have some lingering concerns about the implications of the Reliability Guarantee on large energy users who may be ‘liable entities’ under the proposed design,” said Mr Richards.
EUAA members have been active participants in the ESB consultation process with productive and valuable discussions taking place.
“Lasting energy and climate policy with bipartisan agreement that helps guide the energy transition is the long-term goal and we cannot lose sight of that,” added Mr Richards.
“We are pleased to see that the ESB will be seeking further discussions with large customers on the Reliability Guarantee. No one wants unintended consequences that increase costs unnecessarily from a policy that is intended to deliver better outcomes for all energy users.”
EUAA member companies include significant retail, mining, manufacturing, materials and food processing industries that produce and manufacture essential items used by the Australian community every day.
The Commonwealth Government is currently accepting submissions in response to the design.