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SGM International Best Practice Benchmarks
We commend the government's initiative to establish international best practice benchmarks for our safeguard facilities. This consultation is very important and must be used to identify an ambitious and meaningful benchmark for Australia . Establishing this benchmark represents a significant opportunity to decarbonise our high-emission facilities, setting Australia on a trajectory to achieve net zero by 2050, and positioning us as a renewable energy superpower.
Australia stands in a unique position, boasting world-class renewable energy resources. This allows us not only to decarbonize our established industries in regional industrial hubs but also to develop a clean manufacturing sector. Four Renewable Energy Industrial Precinct (REIP) locations - Gladstone, Kwinana/South-West WA, Hunter, and Bell Bay - account for nearly 25% of the total SGM emissions. Our work on REIPs shows that delivering renewable energy and other common user infrastructure to these industry clusters can achieve large scale emission reductions while repowering our industries for growing cleantech and clean commodity markets. Such an approach promotes economies of scale for renewable energy generation and transmission needed by SGM facilities, offering notable cost benefits compared to addressing each facility individually. Consequently, this strategic approach provides the government with a higher return on investment in its decarbonization efforts, potentially freeing up resources for further emission reductions.
Our 2021 Export Powerhouse report identified a $333 billion green export opportunity for clean commodities and manufactured goods by 2050 (almost triple the value of 2019 fossil fuel exports). We have a once in a generation opportunity to establish a globally competitive clean commodity market.
With the introduction of the Inflation Reduction Act and the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism, we are at a critical junction for investing in enabling infrastructure that will allow manufacturing sector to setup green manufacturing of commodities such as green steel, green aluminium, green hydrogen, etc.
To realise this opportunity, we need to:
Expansion of Capacity Investment Scheme a welcome step forward but more needs to be done
There are further opportunities to keep energy costs down for households and drive Australian manufacturing.
Australia can capture niche battery markets
Australia can create a battery manufacturing industry targeting Australia’s grid and heavy vehicle battery markets.
Further resources for Australia’s decarbonisation pathway
How batteries for energy storage and electric vehicles can greatly cut Australia's emissions
National Supergrid is a five-year grid investment program - the foundation of Australia's renewable energy future.