SA Govt energy plan misses new demand side reduction with energy efficiency, 14 Mar 2017
“While we recognise the need for South Australia (SA) to shore up local energy supply options given the failure of the national energy policy, the State Government has however only dealt with the supply side, and not the demand side of the energy equation,” according to President of the Energy Efficiency Certificate Creators Association (EECCA), Hamish McGovern.
“SA’s six point plan: South Australian Power for South Australians announced today 14 March 2017, gives no consideration to new demand side measures such as energy efficiency which is categorically acknowledged as the lowest cost measure for reducing baseload consumption and greenhouse gas abatement.
“While we commend the SA Government on its commitment to transform the energy situation, we call on both the Premier and Minister for Energy to commit to more significant, progressive complementary energy efficiency measures including an expansion and extension of the successful Retailer Energy Efficiency Scheme (REES). The time is now for governments across Australia to establish policy frameworks that give greater emphasis to proven energy demand side solutions in the same policy plans as energy supply side solutions.
“The REES has proven to be a very effective policy measure since 2009 for delivering energy savings that result in the need for less electricity supply. The scheme empowers residential and business energy customers to invest in more efficient energy solutions that dramatically reduce electricity consumption. For example, the installation of cost-effective LED lighting can reduce lighting consumption by 80 per cent. This is only the tip of the iceberg.
“South Australia could include more activities into the REES that enable customers to reduce their energy consumption, such as including for businesses, air conditioning, lighting and refrigeration as well as more complex energy efficiency upgrades for large energy users, as has been introduced in the schemes in Victoria and New South Wales. The REES could also increase the current energy savings cap on approved activities in any given job as this would enable a much larger target to be set and achieved to deliver more significant energy savings across the State. Based on the experience of other schemes, the response to such scheme expansion would be rapid and high impact in terms of reducing demand, and provide a robust, long term vehicle for transformational change. All South Australians benefit from the REES as reduced demand directly attributable to the scheme puts downward pressure on energy prices. Expansion of the REES would have the added benefit of reducing the cost of delivering SA’s 50 per cent renewables target.
“We look forward to continuing to work with the South Australian Government including participation in its upcoming REES review consultation process, and to its announcement later this year of REES targets for 2018-2020,” Mr McGovern concluded.
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, firstname.lastname@example.org