Sparking changes to Victoria’s energy reduction target

Victoria’s government has announced plans to extend the state’s pollution, the Victorian Energy Efficiency Target, which aim to reduce emissions and electricity bills for homeowners and businesses.

State energy minister Lily D’Ambrosio unveiled the changes at Victoria’s first Energy Efficiency and Productivity Summit on Tuesday.

The Labor government’s alterations will extend the VEET from three to five years and boost the target by 20 per cent over five years – from 5.4 million certificates in 2017 to 6.5 million in 2020.

Each certificate represents one tonne of carbon dioxide equivalent abated through specified energy saving activities.

“The strengthening of the VEET scheme reflects our commitment to energy efficiency as a way of helping Victorians to reduce their energy bills and create more Victorian jobs”, Ms D’Ambrosio said.

The VEET provides and incentive for homes and businesses to save energy, offering certificates in return for eligible energy efficiency activities, including draft reflection, insulation and installation of efficient lights, heating systems and appliances.

Changes to the VEET scheme have been welcomed by the energy efficiency industry, following a period of apprehension under the previous state government.

The Napthine Liberal government proposed scrapping the VEET entirely after a review in May 2014 suggested the scheme had minimal benefits.

But Energy Efficiency Council Chief Luke Menzel said he suported Labor’s plans for the VEET.

“The ECC welcomes the Victorian government’s to raise the VEET”, Mr Menzel said.

“As Lily D’Ambrosio…said, this will lower bills for homes and businesses while creating jobs in the energy efficiency sector.”

Environment Victoria CEO mark Wakeham also expressed his support for the measures, reportedly saying the government’s move was “sending a strong signal that it wants clean energy jobs and less pollution.

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