NSW Labor joins with Victoria in calling for Tony Abbott to allow state Renewable Energy Targets

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NSW Labor today joined with the Victorian Andrews Government’s call for Tony Abbott to lift the legal barriers currently preventing state-based renewable energy targets (RETs).

“NSW Labor welcomes the Andrews Government’s call for Tony Abbott to stop standing in the way of green jobs and allow states to institute their own RETs,” Shadow Minister for Energy Adam Searle said.

Removing section 7c from the Renewable Energy (Electricity) Act 2000 (Cth) would allow the states to set their own RETs, which would in turn top up the national target and guarantee industry certainty.

“Last week, Tony Abbott weakened the national RET to only 33,000 gigawatt hours, allowed the burning of native forests, and created great uncertainty in the industry with two-yearly reviews of the RET scheme,” Mr Searle said.

“Tony Abbott is putting green state economies and environments at risk,” Mr Searle said.

Shadow Minister for Environment Penny Sharpe said: “We need a strong national and state-based RET framework to counter damaging environmental pollution.

“A strong RET framework will also support the thousands of jobs and millions of dollars of investment the renewable energy industry creates.

“NSW Environment Minister Mark Speakman should be held accountable for the environmentally hostile decisions of his Federal Liberal colleagues.

“Last week the RET was dramatically weakened, and this week’s federal budget confirmed the axing of the Clean Energy Finance Corporation - Minister Speakman must stand up and protect the NSW environment and defend the millions of dollars invested in green jobs.

“Most importantly, Minister Speakman should join the Andrews Government’s call for Tony Abbott to make combatting the disastrous effects of climate change easier not harder, by allowing the states to establish their own RETs.”