13 Sept 2016
ARENA DEFUNDING IS UNNECESSARY AND SHORT-SIGHTED
WWF-Australia today said the Federal Government’s compromise plan to defund the Australian Renewable Energy Agency by $500 million is unnecessary and short-sighted in the face of a climate change crisis.
Following a cut of $435 million in 2014 this means ARENA will have lost nearly $1 billion in funding.
“Why punish an agency that is making a difference? Just last week ARENA’s announcement on big solar showed its worth. Every dollar ARENA is spending on these projects is expected to generate $10 in return,” said WWF-Australia spokesperson Kellie Caught.
“There is no need to cut ARENA, there is an easy choice that eases budget deficit pressure while also tackling climate change."
“Polling conducted in May found more Australians support ending fossil fuel subsidies to raise revenue than any other major measure on the table, with a quarter of respondents wanting the funds specifically spent on growing renewable energy."
“The situation would have been far worse if the ALP had agreed to the Government’s initial plan to strip all of ARENA’s $1.3 billion in funding."
“WWF calls for ARENA’s remaining $800 million to be put to work urgently to deliver clean energy innovation and jobs for Australians."
“Pushing investment out to later years leaves ARENA vulnerable to further raids on its funding."
“WWF urges both the major parties to remove fossil fuel subsidies and use that money to re-instate ARENA’s full funding,” she said.
WWF-Australia Media Contact: Mark Symons, Senior Media Officer, 0400 985 571,