A study by the respected Pew Charitable Trusts has found that $2.3 trillion could be invested in clean power assets in G-20 countries over the decade from 2020 to 2030 if enhanced clean energy policies are adopted. The report says that Australia has the potential to obtain $35 billion of that investment.
In order to capture that investment, Australia would need to:
- put a price on carbon;
- place a moratorium on the construction of new coal-fired power plants;
- reduce subsidies for fossil fuel energy production;
- establish a national feed-in tariff programme, based on existing State programmes, for small-scale solar;
- undertake smart grid and transmission programs to better integrate energy distribution across the continent;
- direct funds towerds venture capital to foster wind and solar technology development; and
- pair the biofuels tax credit with a stringent renewable fuels standard.
The study found that, under current polies, Australia’s clean energy investment is likely to increase from $1 billion in 2009 to $2.5 billion in 2020. Under the enhanced polices, it would reach $4 billion by 2020.