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TRUenergy is afraid of competition with cheap, clean renewable energy

Media Release
Christine Milne 7 Sep 2012

TRUenergy CEO Richard McIndoe's campaign to undermine the enormously popular Renewable Energy Target betrays his fear of losing a fair competition between coal and renewable energy, the Australian Greens said today.

Rather than campaigning to reduce the renewable energy target, it needs to be increased out to 2030 and to reach 100% as quickly as possible.

While experience in Australia and around the world shows that renewable energy, with marginal costs close to zero, puts downward pressure on wholesale energy prices, TRUenergy is using aggregated costs over 17 years to run a scare campaign.

"TRUenergy is a short-sighted old vested interest, used to undisputed dominance of its sector, trying to block fair competition and undermine hugely popular action that will reduce power bills and cut the pollution that drives global warming," Australian Greens Leader, Senator Christine Milne, said today.

"Here in Australia and around the world, renewable energy is already winning the energy race despite billions of dollars of subsidies to coal each year, and Richard McIndoe's inflation of numbers show he is scared of losing a fair competition.

"The scariest figure even Mr McIndoe can concoct to support his claim that we can't afford to keep the renewable energy target as it is, $25 billion by 2030, translates to a grand total of 95c a week for the average customer. That doesn't sound so scary, does it? But even that, on global experience, is likely to be hugely overstated.

"Last week, wind power accounted for 58% of South Australia's energy use and is putting very substantial downward pressure on wholesale energy prices, outcompeting coal and gas. The same is happening in Germany, where lower energy prices thanks to renewable energy are making coal and gas companies increasingly uncompetitive.

"Instead of putting the effort in to preparing for this cheaper and cleaner future energy market, TRUenergy sits on its dirty old business structures and stakes its future on lobbying the Parliament to change its laws.

"An overwhelming majority of Australians want to see Australia move to 100% renewable energy as soon as possible, we know it can be done, and we know that it is good for the economy today and into the future. It's time for Richard McIndoe and his ilk to get on board or get out of the way."

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