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Australian Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Senator the Hon. Ian Campbell
20 February 2006
Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Senator Ian Campbell, today said climate change was a complex challenge that demanded governments and business to adopt a ‘multi-track’ approach if we are to successfully meet the challenge.
Speaking at the Australia-New Zealand Climate Change and Business Conference in Adelaide, Senator Campbell said climate change would affect all countries and all sectors of their economies.
“The nature of climate change means we need to address it on multiple fronts – there are no ‘one-size-fits-all solutions,” Senator Campbell said.
“Different countries have different national interests and different economies. By paving the way for a multi-track approach, we can create an opportunity for all to contribute – no matter their circumstances.
“We need global cooperation among all major emitters, cooperation between governments and business, and we need to explore different technological solutions.
“The Australian Government is already shifting the scale and nature of its investments into these new technologies. We’ve established the $500 million Low Emissions Technology Fund todemonstrate new technologies that will substantially reduce Australia’s emissions.
“The visionary $75 million Solar Cities concept will unlock the potential for solar to be a central part of our domestic energy supply – it will involve thousands of businesses and households working together to be energy wise. Under previous programmes, we’ve been dipping our toe in the water, with solar cities we are now diving in.
“One of the Solar Cities will be created in Adelaide, continuing the Australian Government’s strong investment in South Australia. So far we’ve invested $7.3 million in rebates for remote power to help generate 685 kW of solar and wind energy; approved $9.2 million in rebates to help install 1870 solar panels; and invested $13.9 million to help South Australian companies develop renewable energy technologies such as hot dry rocks and ‘sliver’ cells.”
Through its $37.6 million Biofuel Capital Grants Programme, Australian Renewable Fuels Pty Ltd has been awarded $7.15 million from the Australian Government towards infrastructure at its biodiesel plant in Port Adelaide.
This new supply of biodiesel should facilitate significant reductions in both greenhouse gas emissions and pollution in South Australia.
“Australian Government initiatives have also enabled construction in South Australia of almost 220 wind turbines, which is enough to power about 230,000 households.”
Senator Campbell also encouraged debate over how to best create credible, durable price signals for carbon in the future that would give businesses investment confidence and long-term certainty that extended beyond 2012.
“The challenge is to develop a system that does not risk international competitiveness and job security,” Senator Campbell said.
“It is important that the trade carbon does not simply shift greenhouse gas emissions from one State to another or from one country to another.”
Senator Campbell said the sort of model promoted by economist Dr Warwick McKibbon incorporating long term targets was most likely to ensure low costs and economic efficiency.
Marianne McCabe 02 6277 7640 or 0400 389 580