Environment Victoria today welcomed the release of the Victorian Greenhouse Strategy, but warned that the benefits of the Strategy could be negated by a new brown coal power plant proposed for the Latrobe Valley.
The Government estimates that the Victorian Greenhouse Strategy will save about five to eight million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions per year, compared with ‘business as usual’. Meanwhile, the Government is considering a tender for a coal-to-oil plant that would emit an estimated 14 million tonnes of additional carbon dioxide per year.
“We welcome the announcement of the Victorian Greenhouse Strategy,” said Environment Victoria spokesperson, Darren Gladman. “The Strategy has a number of very sensible and commendable initiatives.”
Commendable greenhouse policies and initiatives in the Strategy include:
Support for ratification of the Kyoto Protocol
Mandatory 5-star efficiency standards for new houses
A commitment to developing an energy policy later this year that will address the greenhouse emissions from Victoria’s energy sector
“Five star efficiency standards are simply the most sensible way to build new houses,” said Darren Gladman. “Five star ratings mean that home owners will save energy and save money over the life of their house. Smart, energy efficient design is not expensive and it can halve household energy bills.”
Environment groups expressed disappointed that the Strategy does not set a specific greenhouse target for Victoria or rule out the development of new brown coal facilities.
“Proposals for a new brown coal power plant are a ‘Sword of Damocles’ hanging over the Government’s Greenhouse Strategy,” said Darren Gladman. “Allowing a new brown coal power plant could wipe out all of the savings in greenhouse pollution resulting from the Greenhouse Strategy.”