The Clean Energy Council said emissions trading would boost the economy, unlocking $20 billion in clean energy investment.
While the Federal Government is formulating the scheme, recent surveys showed businesses were unprepared for the new policy, which is set to commence in 2010.
The council’s policy general manager Rob Jackson said it was “imperative” that the scheme begins in 2010 to provide business certainty as now is the time to make decisions for long-term energy infrastructure investment.
“An early start and a secure trajectory will give business the sign it needs to invest in emissions reduction,” he said.
Mr Jackson said the scheme, however, needs to be implemented along with complementary measures such as the 20 per cent renewable energy target and energy efficiency targets to deliver a strong market signal to transition the economy.
“It will take some time for the emissions trading scheme alone to deliver a carbon price high enough to stimulate renewable energy investment. Complementary measures…will build critical industry capacity and take the pressure off an emissions trading scheme to reach a high carbon price quickly.
“In addition, through energy efficiency, we can save 30-35% of our existing energy use in buildings at zero cost or even at a profit by 2020. This will reduce the overall abatement task and create high quality jobs in energy services along the way,” he said.
“Significant carbon reduction is achievable and affordable. A 20 per cent renewable energy target will unlock the vast clean energy investment potential in Australia.”
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