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INDUSTRY, BUSINESS, CONSUMERS WANT ENERGY ACTION

December 14, 2016

Energy suppliers, businesses groups and consumers have joined in the chorus of experts that are urging the Government to end climate policy uncertainty, which is costing investment, threatening security and driving up power prices for all Australians.

A diverse group of organisations, led by the Clean Energy Council, have released a joint-statement calling for the Government to stop ruling out climate policy options to be considered by its 2017 climate change review.

This follows Mr Turnbull’s refusal to ever consider an emissions intensity scheme (EIS) for the electricity sector, despite expert advice that it would save households and businesses billions in electricity bills.

The statement, from 18 diverse organisations including: Business Council of Australia, the Australian Aluminium Council, Energy Networks Australia, St Vincent de Paul and the Australian Council of Trade Unions, is further proof that Mr Turnbull isn’t listening to anyone on the future of Australia’s energy sector except the likes of Tony Abbott and Cory Bernardi.

The statement highlights the costs of the Turnbull Government’s energy policy vacuum and calls on the Government to stop taking policy options off the table, saying:

“The status quo of policy uncertainty, lack of coordination and unreformed markets is increasing costs, undermining investment and worsening reliability risks.”

“This impacts all Australians, including vulnerable low-income households, workers, regional communities and trade-exposed industries.”

“Taking policy options off the table at this point risks a less efficient transformation, continued investment uncertainty, higher electricity prices and lower international competitiveness.”

This Government has no plan to take serious action on modernising Australia’s energy system, and by doing so they are driving up electricity prices for Australian households and businesses and sacrificing desperately needed investment and jobs.

Modelling released last week by the Australian Energy Markets Commission concluded the Government’s refusal to consider an EIS could cost energy consumers up to $15 billion in higher costs.

In contrast, Labor’s election platform included an EIS as part of a broader energy modernisation plan, a 50 per cent renewable energy by 2030 as well as root and branch modernisation of the National Electricity Market rules.

All Australians are paying the price for Mr Turnbull’s policy paralysis; in higher electricity prices, an investment and jobs freeze and rising levels of pollution.

By ignoring business, users and experts and only listening to the extreme right of his party, it is clear the only future Malcolm Turnbull wants to secure is his own, regardless of the cost for the rest of us.

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