Warburton dismayed by level of new RET

Businessman and former chairman of Manufacturing
Australia, Dick Warburton, has expressed disappointment at the new Renewable
Energy Target.

The federal government and Labor agreed last week to an in-principle target of 33,000 gigawatt hours of energy produced from renewable
sources by 2020. This figure was revised downwards from a previous target of
41,000.

Warburton, who recommended the revised RET be 26,000 – a so-called “true 20 per cent” – in his review of renewable energy last August.

“It
will take it to about 24 per cent or 25 per cent [by 2020]. Therefore, you have
to ask yourself the question ‘why are we continuing to put subsidies into
generating more electricity which is already over-supplied?” Warburton
told The Australian Financial Review.

He cited the UK government’s decision to end subsidies
for on-shore wind farms.

“The
wind farm industry can’t survive without massive subsidies, which are paid for
by consumers via higher electricity prices.” He said.

The federal government and opposition are still in disagreement about whether or not the burning of wood should be considered a renewable form of energy. 

Warburton
was the inaugural head of lobby group Manufacturing Australia, retiring from this position in November 2012.

He is a vocal critic of the claimed contribution
humanity makes to global warming, though rejects the label “climate change denier”.

Image: News Corp