Statement regarding Energy Ministers Meeting


Today Energy Ministers agreed on a Capacity Investment Scheme that will support new, zero emissions dispatchable capacity. The Scheme will help to ensure reliability and affordability as we transition our electricity grid to zero emissions.

The development of a capacity mechanism has been the topic of discussion for some time by Energy Ministers, but under the previous Federal Government the proposal was for the payments to be available to coal and gas generators. This approach did not align with Australia’s net zero emissions goal, and would have missed an important opportunity to build the resilient, renewable energy future we need.

I have consistently argued that the mechanism should apply only to new, zero emissions capacity like renewables with battery storage.

I’m very pleased that today Energy Ministers have provided in-principle support for a mechanism that is only for new, zero emissions capacity. This decision reflects the broad agreement across governments that we need to rapidly shift to zero emissions electricity generation and prepare the grid for broad-scale electrification. It aligns with the decarbonisation pathway we need to take to meet our emissions reduction targets, and puts us in good stead for the renewable energy future we know is coming and which can offer great opportunities for Australia as a renewable energy powerhouse.

Following a presentation by Energy Consumers Australia, I canvassed the need for governments to give energy consumers better information on how to reduce their energy usage and costs. The meeting supported this proposal, and the ACT will now lead the development of a paper for consideration at the next meeting, which will propose next steps to support households and businesses to better understand and manage their energy use and energy bills.