AUSTRALIA could become the world's biggest gas exporter but its domestic use of fossil fuels will decline as the carbon tax drives a gradual switch to renewables such as wind and solar, the government's energy white paper says.
The long delayed paper, released on Thursday, urges the deregulation of electricity pricing and the roll-out of smart meters, which give businesses and households greater ability to use cheaper, off-peak electricity, as part of a package of reforms to curb soaring power prices.
It also calls on state and federal governments to put in place regulations to overcome environmental and local objections to the coal seam gas industry so that coal seam gas reserves can be fully exploited.
Read more: http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/opinion/political-news/reform-package-pushes-gas-as-new-energy-leader-20121108-290xo.html
The carbon tax has helped to drive a sharp fall in the emissions intensity of Australia's power generation as coal-fired stations are closed, moth-balled or sell less electricity.
Electricity sold into the east coast market in the three months since the tax was introduced created on average 7.6 per cent less carbon dioxide for each megawatt hour of power, an analysis of figures compiled by the Australian Energy Market Operator shows.
Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/data-point/power-pollution-plunges-20121017-27rn9.html