Business could pay $10 billion for energy target

The federal government has estimated that its clean energy target of around 15 per cent will cost industry between $8 billion and $10 billion until 2020. Modelling conducted by the government has shown that the cost of its target would be $7.9 billion if implemented on top of an emissions trading scheme but could be as high as $10 billion if there was no trading scheme. Emissions trading is set to be introduced in 2011 so the clean energy target will co-exist with a direct cost on carbon for only part of the scheme's lifetime. Research from the renewable energy industry shows that higher clean energy targets will lower the cost of reducing emissions as they would force industry to invest in energy efficient sources sooner instead of experiencing shock when emissions trading is eventually introduced.