Labor shadow ministers have injected more confusion over Labor’s 50 per cent Renewable Energy Target.
It is already apparent that Labor doesn’t know what its policy is called, whether it will be legislated, how much it costs or what impact it will have on power prices and energy security.
Now it is increasingly obvious Bill Shorten’s shadow ministry doesn’t know if its RET even exists.
This morning, Shadow Assistant Treasurer Andrew Leigh confidently said Labor wouldn’t have a RET:
David Speers: Is Labor reconsidering at all its 50 per cent Renewable Energy Target?
Andrew Leigh: Well we have committed to getting to 50 per cent renewables...
David Speers: Without a Renewable Energy Target?
Andrew Leigh: Without the Renewable Energy Target, that’s right.
Sky News AM Agenda, 2 April 2017
So the question has to be asked – does Labor have a Renewable Energy Target or not? – because just last week in Parliament, Labor’s other Shadow Assistant Minister for Treasury, Matt Thistlethwaite, said the exact opposite:
“We outlined that plan in the lead-up to the last election. It includes a 50 per cent target of renewables by 2030, and we will achieve that through an emissions trading scheme. We will introduce a price on carbon in our economy, and that will reduce over time...We will boost the RET”.
Adjournment Debate, 28 March 2017
So Bill Shorten has two shadow ministers in the Treasury portfolio, one saying Labor will not have a RET and the other saying Labor will boost the RET. No wonder they are confused because their leader has neither had the courage to defend it, nor the guts to drop it. Bill Shorten is staying true to his infamous line on the 7.30 Report that “if you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there.” The problem is we’ve seen where it gets you with disastrous consequences in South Australia.
The Turnbull Government is getting on with the job of implementing practical measures that will shore up energy security and reduce power prices, whether it’s Snowy Hydro 2.0, new energy storage projects in Australia, reining in network and retail costs or getting more gas into the market.