The Government will invest $4.5 billion (including $1 billion of existing funding) in a new Clean Energy Initiative, including:
- $465 million for the establishment of a renewable technology innovation body, Renewables Australia (could be good, if they don't sanction burning forests for fuel)
- $1.5 billion for a Solar Flagships Program aiming to establish 1,000 megawatts of solar electricity generation (looks good, a step in the right direction)
- $2 billion over nine years for investment in large-scale Carbon Capture and Storage demonstration projects (not good - this should be funded by the coal industry, not taxpayers).
- $2.75 billion ($2.45 billion existing funding) to the Climate Change Action Fund under the CPRS, to inform and position business, industry and community on the impacts of a low carbon economy (This looks like a huge amount of greenwash for the CPRS? The money would be better spent on clean energy provision)
- $100 million per annum to establish the Global Carbon Capture and Storage Institute to inform global action on the development and commercialization of this technology (not good, this is more corporate welfare for the coal industry)
- $100 million per annum over three years to the World Bank’s Clean Technology Fund. (not sure about this one, if the the fund delivers genuine clean energy this would be OK).
For those that want more detail, the Climate Change Budget Overview 2009—10 provides a summary of the Government's climate change strategy, describing the objectives of each measure and the providing the name of the agencies who will implement them.
Overall, for I give it 2/10 for transitioning us to a low carbon economy and off coal. There is far too much corporate welfare gifted to the coal industry, and not enough directed to efficiency measures and genuine clean energy.