In August 2009, the Government implemented the Renewable Energy Target (RET) scheme, which is designed to deliver on the Government's commitment, to ensure that 20 per cent of Australia's electricity supply will come from renewable sources by 2020.
The Government designed the RET scheme in co-operation with state and territory governments through COAG.
In agreeing a design in April 2009, COAG agreed that some specific issues should be further considered in a review known as the COAG Review of Specific RET Issues (the Review). The Renewable Energy Sub-Group (RESG) has undertaken the Review and developed a report to inform COAG of three specific issues:
- Whether any new small-scale technologies should be made eligible under the RET
- Whether changes should be made to provisions granting exemptions from RET liability for 'self-generated' electricity, mainly affecting remote resource projects, and
- Whether new waste coal mine gas (WCMG) projects should be made eligible under the RET.
The RESG's final report:
- identifies and analyses options for addressing each issue, informed by submissions received through public consultations and modelling of the impacts of options on RET cost and technology mix
- includes a preferred option for each of the issues considered, and
- provides information and informal analysis relating to the inclusion of large-scale geothermal direct heat, noting that formal consideration is outside the terms of reference of the Review.
The Select Council on Climate Change (SCCC) agreed, at its 4 May 2012 meeting, to convey this report to the Climate Change Authority (CCA) as input into the statutory review of the RET.