Liberals Plan To Kill Jobs And Increase Power Prices

13 February 2017

Opposition Leader Matthew Guy’s plan to scrap Victoria’s Renewable Energy Target (VRET) will put thousands of jobs at risk – while significantly increasing power prices and pollution.

VRET is providing investment certainty that will drive $9 billion in investment in renewables and large-scale energy storage – creating 11,000 new jobs, cutting the cost of power for Victorians and enhancing grid resilience.

The vast majority of these jobs will be in regional Victoria. We’ve already seen $450 million invested in a 240MW wind farm in Ararat – a project which will create 165 jobs in the region.

The Andrews Labor Government has also supported a further $220 million investment into two new wind farms which will begin construction this year, bringing hundreds more jobs into regional Victoria, and invested $5 million towards the deployment of grid enhancing utility storage.

Mr Guy’s announcement comes on the same day that industry and environmentalists called on state and federal governments to get on with the job of ensuring a reliable, affordable and clean energy supply for all Australians.

The Labor Government remains ready to work with state and federal counterparts on a cohesive strategy moving forward, but there are challenges which we must face.

Reports today indicate Malcolm Turnbull and Josh Frydenberg deliberately misled the Australian people on the cause of the South Australian blackout in September 2016 – ignoring advice from their own experts that the blackout was caused by unprecedented storm damage to the network, and renewables were not to blame.

Experts agree that greater investment in renewable energy will lower prices, create jobs and significantly reduce emissions – making it hard to understand the Liberal and National push to move away from renewables and go ‘all in’ on ultra-supercritical coal.

Recent analysis by Bloomberg New Energy Finance shows that supercritical coal is the most expensive form of new supply, is inflexible and highly emissions intensive.

Quotes attributable to Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio

“Matthew Guy’s plan will kill thousands of jobs, increase electricity prices and send emissions soaring. He's just shown every Victorian he's Malcolm's Guy, no matter how many jobs it costs.”

“Malcolm Turnbull can’t keep using renewables as a scapegoat – over the weekend NSW, one of the most coal dependent states in the world, came very close to a blackout.”

“No matter how hard Malcolm Turnbull pushes, industry is saying that new coal-fired power stations won’t be built. Business groups have slammed the proposal because it’s bad for business and bad for the environment.”

Reviewed 19 August 2020

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