May 2017

Media release: Adani could get free coal costing Qld budget as much as $1.2 billion

Following media report that the Queensland Government and Adani are negotiating a discount on the royalties the company would pay to extract the state/s coal resources, The Australia Institute has calculated the potential cost of a ‘roylaty holiday’ to the taxpayer. The Courier Mail reported that the government and Adani working on this deal: Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk

NT fracking hope misguided: Economist points out high risks and low returns

The Australia Institute has made a submission to the Northern Territory’s inquiry into fracking and unconventional gas development. The Canberra-based research organisation finds that fracking would reduce energy security and could represent a net economic loss to the Territory. Energy security would be reduced because the NT already has plenty of conventional gas to cover

April 2017

Gas moratorium remains popular with voters

New polling shows that more than twice as many Australians (56%) support moratoriums on fracking as oppose them (20%), despite concerted lobbying from the gas industry to allow them further access to land. The poll, conducted by The Australia Institute, asked respondents if they support or oppose state bans on fracking. Question: Some states and

Three years too long to wait for 5-minute solution

The Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) has acknowledged the need for a key reform in the 5-minute settlement rule, but in the same statement said it does not plan to implement the rule change for 3 years. The ‘5-minute rule’ would help address price spikes and load shedding by changing market price periods. This would

War on renewables has no effect on voters: poll

New polling shows that despite a concerted campaign from sectors of the federal government and coal and gas industries, public support remains very high for renewable energy, and for the strengthening of state and federal targets.  The poll, conducted by The Australia Institute through Research now, asked a representative sample of 1420 Australians about renewable

Open Letter calls for straightforward changes to fix ‘energy trilemma’

‘5-minute rule’ identified as key to immediate and responsible fix for peak-load issues. The Australia Institute has today published an open letter to the Prime Minister calling for three market reforms to address the ‘energy trilemma’: security, cost and emissions. The letter appears as a full-page advertisement in the Australian Financial Review. Prominent signatories of

March 2017

Coalition voters asked about energy policy, Adani subsidies

ReachTEL polling for The Australia Institute of Dickson, the seat held by Peter Dutton, has shown strong support for Labor’s renewable energy target and opposition to government backing of the Adani coal mine.   Polling of the marginal Queensland electorate showed very strong opposition to subsidies going to the Adani Carmichael mine project. [FULL RESULTS IN

Political pressure risks $5 billion infrastructure fund becoming a barrel of pork

As the $5 billion Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) considers a $1 billion concessional loan to foreign coal company Adani, a new report from The Australia Institute raises major concerns about the NAIF’s political independence, governance, resourcing and public transparency. Widespread media coverage during December that NAIF had ‘conditionally approved’ the $1 billion proposal was

February 2017

Dawson Polling: One Nation surge, support for RET, opposition to company tax cuts

New polling of Dawson, the seat held by George Christensen, conducted by ReachTEL, commissioned by The Australia Institute, shows support for Pauline Hanson’s One Nation party at level pegging with the LNP at 30% of the primary vote. Issue-based questions in the same poll revealed strong support in Dawson for an increase to the renewable

Australia and Indonesia – the OPEC of coal

The Australia Institute says Turnbull must discuss coal with Jokowi Indonesian President Joko Widodo will visit Australia this weekend, as The Australia Institute releases new research on Indonesian energy policy. The Institute has called for coal, energy and climate to be on the agenda for talks with President Widodo. Australia and Indonesia are the world’s

Liberals heartland rejects PM’s company tax and renewables agenda

New polling conducted by ReachTEL for The Australia Institute of the electorates represented by Malcolm Turnbull and Tony Abbott reveals strong opposition for cutting the tax rate, particularly for larger companies. Both electorates registered more support for increasing the company tax rate than cutting it. In the Prime Minister’s electorate of Wentworth 43% supported an

December 2016

Open letter puts unanswered economic questions on Adani project to PM

The Australia Institute have today published an open letter to the Prime Minister outlining the unasked and unanswered economic questions regarding the Adani Carmichael mine proposal and its potential public subsidisation of $1 billion. The letter appears as a full-page advertisement in the Australian Financial Review. The questions put: 1 –  Will the Adani mine

Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility should prioritise people and renewables: poll

Australians don’t want their money funding infrastructure for coal and gas companies under the $5 billion Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF), national polling released today reveals. The NAIF will spend $5 billion of public funds in Northern Australia on infrastructure that is unable to attract commercial financing, which could include subsidising the controversial Adani Carmichael

November 2016

Australians back Timor-Leste in maritime dispute

Australians favour international law to determine Timor maritime boundary between Timor-Leste and Australia, even if that delivers Timor-Leste a substantial share of the oil and gas in the Timor Sea. The poll of 10,271 residents across Australia showed 56.5% support for establishing a maritime boundary in accordance with current international law, with only 17% opposed

October 2016

Australia’s unaccounted for emissions could cause Paris target failure

A new report by the University of Melbourne Energy Institute has found that unmeasured methane leakage and fugitive emissions from unconventional gasfields could cause Australia to fail its Paris climate commitments. The report, commissioned by The Australia Institute, found that: Several major potential sources of methane emissions are assumed to be zero under Australia’s accounting

GISERA and the threat to independent science

Gas industry funding and direct involvement in research committees of GISERA, the research body that conducts research on social and environmental impacts of CSG, is potentially compromising the scientific independence of CSIRO. The five main Queensland gas companies provide the lion’s share of funding to the Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance (GISERA) – the Gas Industry Social

September 2016

Another day, another $100m subsidy to coal

The Australian government’s settlement with the owners of a coal ship represents another subsidy to the coal industry. With the government settling for $39.3 million while estimating clean up costs of $140 million, the difference represents a cost to taxpayers and or our environment of over $100 million. It’s not clear whether the Australian government

Leaving the ARENA – Australia has just one podium finish on non-fossil fuel energy R&D since 1979

Australia is lagging behind the rest of the world for renewable energy R&D. Data from the International Energy Agency puts Australia on the podium just once since 1979.  Meanwhile, Australia has poured the vast bulk of our R&D dollars into fossil fuel. (See full medal tally below) “Australia has a long history of prioritising fossil

New South Welsh want Senate to block ARENA gutting

Polling shows that just 23% of New South Wales residents want the Senate to pass the government’s proposed $1 billion cut from the Australian Renewable Energy Agency. 53% of those surveyed want the members of the upper house to veto the move. The cuts would effectively decommission ARENA, a long held position of the Abbott-Turnbull

The sunshine state supports ARENA: Poll

Queenslanders resounding oppose government moves to cut the Australian Renewable Energy Agency, which invests in renewable energy projects and innovation. ReachTEL conducted a survey of 1,701 residents across Queensland during the evening of 30th August 2016. Question: The Australian Renewable Energy Agency funds new renewable energy construction and research in Australia. Should the Senate pass

August 2016

Sound economics as Victoria quits fracking for good

The Victorian Government’s decision to ban fracking is based on sound economic and energy policy.   Queensland’s experiment in unconventional gas has demonstrated that the economic benefits promised by the gas industry largely failed to materialise, and there has been an enormous downside to other industries.   Arguments that the gas is needed have rung hollow as Australian domestic gas demand

July 2016

Money trail and special access linked to mining approvals

The report examines 6 highly controversial QLD resource projects and reveals a pattern of political donations, remarkable access to ministers, unaccountable lobbying, cash for access, and the revolving door between the bureaucracy and industry. All of these projects received extraordinary outcomes including policy changes, project approvals and even legislative changes.   The report also highlights the strong connection of these companies to QLD

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