Alan Kohler is one of Australia’s most experienced business commentators. Alan has been a trusted source of investment advice to Australians for many years, and in 2005 he founded Eureka Report - Australia’s #1 online investment report. Along with Robert Gottliebsen and Stephen Bartholomeusz, Alan also founded Business Spectator, the popular business news and commentary website. Alan is the regular finance presenter on the ABC News and producer of the popular nightly graph (or two).
The state premiers are now asking Abbott why he can't sign onto a renewable energy target everyone else agrees to, while countries including the US, Europe and China are raising doubts over the Direct Action fund. Unless things change, he will find himself increasingly isolated and vulnerable.
The energy giant's new chief is obviously trying to reposition the company's image with its climate policy announced today. While a welcome development, for the most part it’s a bit symbolic or represents business-as-usual behaviour.
Super fund investor Industry Funds Management has a big appetite for infrastructure assets, but the growing risk profile of renewable energy developer Pacific Hydro appears to have left a bitter taste it couldn’t palate.
According to the government's logic, the RET should be cut to a 'real' 20% of power consumption. While such a moving target is unworkable for business, would this government really push for a bigger RET if power demand went up?
The government can't win in this forthcoming abatement auction. Abatement supply will be too small to suggest they can hit targets, and to improve things in the future they'll need to pay prices for abatement that suggest the budget will blow out.
Regulators won't reveal the winning bids in the first round of Emissions Reduction Fund auctions, disclosing only an average winning price - which will be of little help to businesses needing a spot price signal to play.
The government refuses to respond to questions about whether they remain committed to containing global warming to 2 degrees. The Climate Institute responds by pointing to threats to Australia's own interests from the current climate change trajectory.
Not content with being on his own against the two main business lobbies, heavy industry, the renewables sector and Labor, Ian Macfarlane is also wrong on his claim Australia can't meet that group's clean energy target - or even a higher one.
The Australian CleanTech Index fell slightly with the benchmarks last month but, like the ASX200, enjoyed a strong overall quarter with the index driven by strong gains in Hot Rock, Energy Developments and Enerji, among others.
The White Paper bravely proposes CO2 be captured and utilised in other products, like carbonated drinks. But the global demand for this sort of CO2 won't even soak up Australia’s electricity emissions, let alone China, the US or India's.