Looming energy crisis scandalous policy failure, says John Howard
Summary: John Howard has described Australia’s looming energy crisis as a “scandalous policy failure of the first order” and declared that the renewable energy target should never have been lifted above 2 per cent.....
Speaking at a post-budget breakfast in Perth, the former prime minister blamed the potential shortage of energy on the east coast on moves by some state governments to restrict or prohibit gas exploration.
“It will be a policy scandal of the first order if those sorts of restrictions and the absolutely overzealous growth of renewable energy targets ... leads to massive increases in the cost of energy in different parts of the country,” he said.
Mr Howard said the challenge of affordable and sustainable energy had barely been mentioned in the post-budget discussion this week.
He said Australia had significant reserves of uranium, coal and natural gas and the potential energy crisis in the eastern states was “a serious condemnation of our political process”.
Mr Howard said the renewable energy target was 2 per cent when he left office in 2007 and should have remained at that level. The national target is now 23.5 per cent by 2030.