Highly successful NSW and VIC energy savings schemes over-deliver under cost - time to increase targets, 10 July 2017

Energy savings achieved by the continuing outstanding success of the energy savings schemes in NSW and Victoria is a blazing bright spot amidst Australia’s darkly dysfunctional energy markets. This has been demonstrated by analysis released today 10 July by the Energy Efficiency Certificate Creators Association (EECCA). The schemes tick all energy crisis trilemma solution boxes with very substantial, direct and rapid impact on energy affordability and security and emissions reductions at lowest cost.

“In the first six months of 2017 alone, on a pro-rata basis, NSW’s target was exceeded by 49 per cent Victoria’s target by 44 per cent. This is demonstrated by the number of certificates created for energy savings activities installed,” said EECCA president Mr Hamish McGovern.

“On an annual basis, the total energy savings for Jan-June 2017 achieved by the two schemes is equivalent to 1,450GWh per annum. Over a five-year period, this amounts to 7,250GWh, which is comparable to the generation of Liddell coal-fired power station in NSW, scheduled for closure in 2022.”

Energy savings and abatement have been achieved at significantly lower than expected cost. For Jan-June 2017, energy savings certificate prices were well below the levels estimated when the schemes were reviewed and expanded. Victorian certificates were 50 per cent below and NSW certificates 23 per cent below estimates respectively.

The majority of recent energy savings have been achieved by LED lighting installations. There is vast scope to deliver on more ambitious targets with other largely untapped lighting technologies like high bays and air conditioning to name a few.

 We have reached July in 2017: the Year of Great Hope for clarity on Australia’s climate change policy direction and the established onset of an energy crisis. Energy market institutions have continually failed to consider energy savings and demand reduction activities as a way to offset the impact of closing aging coal-fired power stations. In June, the Climate Change Authority

(CCA) recommended a national scheme and the Finkel Report supported expansion of existing schemes and more research into energy savings potential.

“Australians need commitment during the final half of 2017 for the lowest cost form of avoided generation and emissions reduction to be duly considered at the policy table and in public conversation. Energy savings schemes are the most cost-effective and enduring method of energy market intervention. Target increases of energy savings schemes will provide certainty for industry growth and stimulate continued rapid roll out of more efficient technologies - which otherwise would not happen. This will provide more energy customers with immediate relief from soaring energy prices.

“The impact of avoided energy use continues once more efficient technologies have been installed. Avoided generation will be much greater over time with more ambitious targets, which have repeatedly proven to be achievable,” concluded Mr McGovern.

The EECCA will continue to advocate to the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) Energy Council and energy ministers to increase and expand energy savings schemes across Australia as recommended by the CCA and Finkel.

 … Ends

 Media please contact:

Hamish McGovern, EECCA President, m 0416 296 827, Ric Brazzale EECCA Policy Sub-committee, m 0419 522 659 or Jessica Lynch, EECCA Communications, m 0417 539 377, comns@eecca.org.au. Website www.eecca.org.au

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