"Australia's commitment to play our fair part in limiting climate change entails big changes over time in policy, technology and practices across most sectors of the economy. Greater clarity about how and when this will be achieved is essential for investment decisions in power, manufacturing, resources and much more.
"Today's announcement that the Federal Government will put more money into the ERF helps provide a clearer pathway for developers of domestic offsets, particularly from the land sector.
"Across the broader economy the announcement is helpful both because other sectors are ultimately likely to need access to offsets, and to provide breathing space while more comprehensive and permanent policies are developed.
"Ai Group has long called for a top-up of the ERF. The ERF may not be a comprehensive or permanent approach to climate policy, and it is likely to be expensive and impractical to try to make it so. Nevertheless, the ERF has played an important role in growing and sustaining a range of offset activities that Australia will badly need as we work towards our long-term emissions goals.
"Longer term policies for the rest of the economy will need to work efficiently, be trade neutral, and help underpin the investments needed across industry to achieve a net zero emissions future.
"Whether bought through the ERF or by industry, offsets only have value if they represent genuine additional abatement. It is important to keep methodologies up to date and to cull projects or methods that no longer meet these expectations," Mr Willox said.
Media enquiries: Tony Melville – 0419 190 347