Greens: Why would we get rid of Renewable Energy Target?

THE clean energy industry and the Greens have greeted the report on review into the Renewable Energy Target with anger calling for an inquiry if the government accepts the panel's recommendations.

The Warburton review, criticised since it was announced in February because the panel lacked bi-partisan support and was led by climate sceptic Dick Warburton, says that the government should either close the scheme to new entrants and wind it back by 2030 or alternatively scale it back to a "real" 20% target which would see the mandated output for renewable energy drop from 41,000 gigawatt hours to about 26,000 gigawatt hours.

While the government welcomed the report saying it would offer its reply in the coming weeks, Greens Leader Senator Christine Milne said that everyone would be able to see it "for the climate denier drivel it is".

"The Renewable Energy Target is cutting pollution, rolling out investment, creating jobs and will bring power bills down. Why on earth would we get rid of it," she said.

Clean Energy Council Acting Chief Executive Kane Thornton said that the recommendations proposed by the review could bankrupt the industry and put thousands of workers out of a job, while terminating competition and innovation in the Australian energy sector.

"These recommendations would create a major sovereign risk issue, sending a very clear signal to international investors and financial markets that Australia's energy sector is not open for business," Mr Thornton said.

If the government acts on the recommendations it will need crossbench support to get them across the line.

The Palmer United Party have said they would support the RET until at least 2016.


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