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Media Release
Senator the Hon Robert Hill
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister for the Environment and Heritage

18 June 2001


Federal Environment Minister Robert Hill today welcomed the start of the world's first green electricity market. The market is an electronic exchange that will see at least 12 leading Australian energy companies trading Renewable Energy Certificates and Greenpower certificates via the Internet.

The Green Electricity Market uses an Internet trading system which interacts with the Renewable Energy Certificates Registry to create, exchange, settle and clear Renewable Energy Certificates and Greenpower certificates. Under the Commonwealth Government's new Renewable Energy (Electricity) Act retailers purchase Renewable Energy Certificates in order to comply with the legislation and avoid penalties. The certificates are created when a renewable generator generates electricity.

"The Green Electricity Market provides a mechanism for trading to occur securely and continuously, with prices established through supply and demand considerations" Senator Hill said.

"Renewable Energy Certificates are a new form of "currency" created by the Commonwealth Government's landmark Renewable Energy (Electricity) Act 2001.

"The certificates are used to demonstrate compliance with the Government's mandatory renewable energy target, which will ensure up to an additional 9,500 gigawatt hours of renewable electricity per year by 2010.

"The Act will see enough renewable residential electricity created to power a city the size of Sydney each year, and create about two billion dollars in investment opportunities for the renewable energy sector."

The Commonwealth Government has contributed $100,000 to assist the Marketplace Company to establish the Green Electricity Market on behalf of a group of renewable energy generators. The Market will be based in Sydney but cover renewable generators and retailers or other liable parties anywhere in Australia. The Commonwealth's contribution has enabled the fee structure to be set in a way that will encourage small generators to also have access to the market.

"I commend the renewable energy industry for their innovation, drive and commitment to this project and wish them every success in their endeavours. Renewable energy is a key component of the Commonwealth's climate change policy, we have committed some $380 million to support the growth of the industry," Senator Hill said.

Monday, June 18, 2001
Media Contact: Belinda Huppatz 02 6277 7640 or 0419 258 364

Commonwealth of Australia