The 2021–22 Budget builds on the Australian Government’s initiatives to guarantee reliable and affordable energy. The measures will stimulate jobs and reduce emissions without imposing new costs on households, businesses or the economy.
Key electricity system measures to maintain affordability, reliability and security:
- $76.9 million over four years from 2022-23 for the Portland aluminium smelter to participate in the Reliability and Emergency Reserve Trader scheme, safeguarding the Victorian electricity system.
- $19.3 million for a renewable energy microgrid incorporating hydrogen in the Daintree in northern Queensland, providing affordable, reliable and clean energy.
- Delivery of key state and territory energy reforms. These include a fit-for-purpose post-2025 market design for the NEM, gas market reform for consumer choice, and implementing Australia’s National Hydrogen Strategy.
The National Gas Infrastructure Plan: Interim Report provides a blueprint of infrastructure requirements for the east coast gas market to 2027. The Australian Government will deliver measures to drive a gas-fired recovery:
- $38.7 million over two years to support critical gas infrastructure projects to alleviate the forecasted gas supply shortfall.
- developing a future investment framework for medium to long-term critical gas projects.
- initiatives to empower gas-reliant businesses to negotiate competitive contracts with suppliers.
- accelerating development of the Wallumbilla Gas Supply Hub in Queensland.
Emissions reduction and clean energy technologies
The Budget includes measures to continue lowering energy prices, reduce emissions and drive investment in new and emerging low-emissions technologies:
- $1.2 billion over 10 years for a Technology Co-Investment Facility. This will boost the Technology Investment Roadmap and build Australia’s reputation as a world-leader in low emissions technologies, including hydrogen. This includes $59.9 million to co-design a carbon offsetting scheme with Australian industry and Indo-Pacific countries, boosting investment in climate change action across the region.
- $26.4 million over four years to help businesses and industry transition to low energy technologies, and reduce energy use and emissions.
- Enabling ARENA to establish a venture capital function with up to $50 million to support commercialisation and use of emerging low emissions technologies.
- $279.9 million over 10 years to implement a Safeguard Crediting Mechanism to unlock industrial emissions reduction opportunities.
This Budget builds on existing investments to strengthen Australia’s long-term fuel security through:
- a refinery production payment to maintain Australia’s refining capability, secure domestic oil stocks and protect jobs
- infrastructure upgrades at refineries to improve fuel quality standards
- a fuel security framework to assist industry to meet the new minimum stockholding obligation.