Auction results put the spotlight on the ERF's weaknesses Media Release

Apr 23, 2015 - 3:59pm

The details emerging from the first auction under the Emissions Reduction Fund (ERF) today show the limitations of what the policy can achieve, said The Climate Institute.

CEO John Connor said: “The results highlight the inadequacy of the policy in two key ways. First, the abatement purchased through the auction is a mere drop in the bucket of the level of carbon pollution reduction that the government needs to achieve credible pollution targets.”

Initial calculations indicate that the ERF has spent one quarter of its total budget, but will achieve only 7 per cent of the emission reductions needed for a credible minimum 2020 target, such as the 19 per cent reduction below 2000 levels recommended by the Climate Change Authority.

Even against the government’s inadequate 5 per cent target by 2020, this auction gets barely 15 per cent of the job done.

“Second, through the ERF the government has shifted the responsibility for pollution reduction from the polluter to the taxpayer.”

“As the government has admitted, Australia’s pollution is continuing to grow, and therefore so will the costs to the public purse of this expensive, inefficient policy.”

“Under the previous carbon laws, major emitters now would not only be responsible for their emissions, but they would be paying around $10 a tonne, whereas the government is paying nearly $14.”

“It is good that projects under the Carbon Farming Initiative have come to fruition, but this kind of policy alone is not going to drive the modernisation that is required for Australia’s clunker economy, especially in the electricity sector.”

“No bells and whistles should disguise just how far we are from any meaningful and much needed carbon pollution reduction,” said Connor.

For more information

Kristina Stefanova, Communications Director, 02 8239 6299

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