Environment Victoria has condemned today’s recommendation by the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) to keep Australia’s fleet of coal-fired power plants operating for as long as possible.
“Any suggestion that we should burn coal for as long as possible is ridiculous and totally fails Australians’ interests when it comes to climate change,” said Environment Victoria Campaigns Manager Dr Nicholas Aberle.
“The National Electricity Objective requires AEMO to consider price, quality, safety, reliability and security of supply. In the 21st century, given that electricity is over a third of Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions, it verges on lunacy that AEMO does not have to think about climate change.
“That’s how we get advice from AEMO to burn coal for as long as possible, even if it condemns us to a world that is increasingly hostile. The National Electricity Objective needs to be re-written to include climate change considerations.
“The report highlights that a mix of firmed renewable energy is the cheapest form of new generation. We should be increasing our investment in renewables to speed up the transition, not lagging behind and relying on ancient, polluting coal power stations.
“We have already been labelled one of the worst countries in the world on climate action. We need to take action through real government ambition in the transition to renewable energy.Victorians want to put an end to dirty energy, not to extend its lifespan. Click To Tweet
“The $27 billion that AEMO estimates will be needed to replace Australia’s coal-fired network is less than half of what we are currently spending on the NBN, or about half of what the Turnbull government is spending on just twelve submarines.
“Renewable energy is already helping push power prices down. Poll after poll shows Victorians want more investment in renewables to help push prices down, cut pollution and create new jobs in regional areas.
“Victorians want to put an end to dirty energy, not to extend its lifespan. There is no reason to wait when we can start building our renewable future now,” said Dr Aberle.
Dr Nicholas Aberle, Environment Victoria Campaigns Manager
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